Home / NEWS / SA SafeWork to launch trench blitz

SA SafeWork to launch trench blitz

trench blitz

SafeWork SA inspectors will launch a compliance blitz on High-Risk Construction Work in September after a worker installing electrical conduit in a trench suffered serious spinal and internal injuries when the excavation collapsed on him.

The man is one of two workers to be trapped in trench collapsed in SA in July.

The incidents

On Tuesday, July 6, a worker was injured after a trench collapsed while removing earth around and under existing services to allow the installation of an electrical conduit.


Read more from MEA


The worker was engulfed up to waist high by the earth for approximately 30 minutes requiring emergency services to respond.

The worker received serious injuries to his spine and internal organs.

A second incident occurred on Monday, July 12 when a worker was injured after a trench collapsed while using a jack hammer.

The worker was engulfed up to shoulder height by earth for approximately 30 minutes. The worker received injuries resulting in bruising and muscle strains.

Safety incidents around excavation collapses are common according to SafeWork SA. These include risks of exposure to open trenching, inadequate shoring of trenches, and trench collapses.

Compliance blitz

SafeWork SA will commence a state-wide compliance audit campaign on High-Risk Construction Work from September.

High-Risk Construction Work includes work being carried out in or near a shaft or trench deeper than 1.5 metres.

The blitz comes after the 2020 Safe Work method statement compliance audit report recommenced more civil construction to be regularly audited.


Master Electricians have unlimited, direct access to the MEA Safety team. If you have any questions regarding the safety on your worksite call 1300 889 198.