OHS Canada Magazine

Man in his late 20s killed in trench collapse in Calgary

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June 9, 2023
By OHS Canada

Health & Safety calgary Worker Fatality

A man in his late 20s is dead after a trench he was working in collapsed in Calgary.

Calgary Fire’s Technical Rescue Team responded to a call at around 10:45 a.m. on Thursday morning in the Charleswood neighbourhood for reports of a trench collapse.

The victim, who works for a private plumbing company, had gone down the ladder into the hole — which was dug the day before — when a large amount of earth collapsed on him from the steep slope above, according to the fire department.

Firefighters used tools to remove the sandy soil and parts of the cinder block retaining wall. However, it became evident that heavy equipment was needed for removal of the surrounding dirt to access the trapped man, it said.

“A track hoe and several dump trucks were brought to the scene to start excavating the area,” it said in a press release. “Fire crews worked with  Water Services personnel and ATCO to ensure the excavation was done as safely as possible. Occupational Health and Safety Officers from the province came to the scene to start their investigation. Calgary Police Service officers were also on scene to do their own investigation.”


The man’s body was recovered on Thursday night. The hole was about three to six metres deep, according to published reports. Both police and Alberta Occupational Health and Safety are conducting investigations.


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