excavation safety app

Excavation and Trench Safety

Excavation and trenching are amongst the most dangerous operations in the construction industry. Dangers can include cave-ins, falling loads, hazardous atmospheres and hazards from using heavy equipment. Regular pre-work inspections can reduce hazards and serious risk of injury. Safety inspections should check for the type of excavation being conducted, support and warning systems in place, access areas, weather conditions, heavy equipment and PPE being used.

iAuditor is a cloud based inspection software platform and mobile app. Use iAuditor to customize your own excavation safety checklists and perform mobile inspections on-site and generate reports on the spot. We have compiled a collection of excavation and trenching checklists to help you get started.

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Excavation Safety Checklist

Use this checklist to perform daily worksite and equipment inspections before starting excavation and trenching work. Begin with recording the excavation purpose, dimensions, soil type, protective systems and equipment being used. Next evaluate the jobsite to ensure utilities, barriers, walkways and warning systems are in place. Also, check if the entry and exit paths are safe and secured. Proceed with assessing the atmosphere underground and the installation of the support systems. Finalize the report by providing safety recommendations and signing off.

Excavator (Front Shovel) Equipment Checklist

Use this checklist for start-up and shut-down procedures when operating a front shovel excavator. This template guides you to perform various checks when starting the machine, during warm-up, when moving the machine and when shutting down. This template can be customized for your specific heavy equipment or machinery being used during excavations and trenching.

Toolbox Talk Meeting Record

Use this toolbox talk log before commencing work on excavations and trenching. Gather and collaborate with the team to discuss unresolved and existing issues that need to be addressed to avoid problems from occurring during operations. Make sure to record what was discussed during the toolbox talk and validate it by having all participants sign off using the iAuditor app.

PPE Safety Checklist

When working on a trench or excavation, suitable protective clothing like hard hats, gloves and high visibility vests must be worn by all workers at all times. Use this template to identify risks and hazards associated with the task performed and select the proper PPE to use.

Excavation Safety Tips

excavation safety tips

Excavations and trenching are one of the most hazardous work operations. To protect workers from injuries and fatalities, preventive measures should be implemented when workers begin excavating:

  1. Inspect trenches daily before work begins. Don’t go near an unprotected trench.
  2. Check weather conditions before work, be mindful of rain and storms.
  3. Keep heavy equipment away from trench edges.
  4. Be mindful of the location of utilities underground.
  5. Always wear proper protective equipment.
  6. Don’t work beneath raised loads.
  7. Conduct atmosphere tests. If low oxygen and toxic gases were detected, workers must not enter the trench.
  8. Protective systems like benching, sloping, shoring and shielding must be created.
  9. Planning and implementation of safety measures must be done by a competent person.

Follow these 5 steps to start performing mobile inspections

  1. Create a free iAuditor account to get started
  2. Download a template above and modify it for your workplace or browse our template library for more
  3. Install the iAuditor app on your mobile or tablet and perform an inspection
  4. Take photos, create actions and generate reports on your device
  5. Invite your teammates. Save time, save lives
Click here to get started