Trenches and excavation happen on nearly every new construction site and in many cases, not much is thought about them; it’s just a hole in the ground, right? Not quite. Trenches can be extremely dangerous, especially for those working in them. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an average of 35 workers die from trench and excavation cave-ins EVERY YEAR.
The OSHA guidelines for trench sloping are generally pretty simple: for trenches less than 20 feet in depth, the slope needs to be cut back to 1.5 times wider than the depth of the trench. However, it can get much more complicated from there. Trenches over 20 feet in depth, require a licensed engineer.
To make it easier, the folks over at trenchsafety.com have created an easy online and mobile tool to answer all your trench sloping questions for free! The app, titled Trench Safety 1.0, can be downloaded on both Android and Apple or simply used on their website. The calculator takes into account soil type, depth, width, and length of the trench to determine exactly how much cut back you’ll need and creates a drawing of your trench as a visual aid.
As a bonus, the app even calculates how much soil you need to remove and the amount you’ll need to put back.
Trench Safety 1.0 | trenchsafety.com