For the past four years in June, NUCA has held the innovative Trench Safety Stand Down (TSSD) Week for the utility construction industry. This year’s event occurs June 15-19 at hundreds of jobsites across the nation, reaching tens of thousands of workers.
TSSD Week is a great time for companies to hold safety training, educational seminars, live demonstrations of trench rescues, and the other activities to reinforce the message of trench safety. Due to the continued success of NUCA’s trench safety program, the Association has decided to devote an entire month to getting the message out to the public and non-NUCA industry companies about the importance of employee safety when working underground or in and around trenches.
In an effort to grow this strong message of safety, NUCA has decided to make June 2020 the first “Trench Safety Month.” NUCA will be leveraging the safety messages of TSSD through its social media channels, internal publications, and the trade press to emphasize several key safety ideas well known through our TSSD materials.
Selecting June as Trench Safety Month is a natural tie-in to the lessons and demonstrations being completed at thousands of NUCA member jobsites during TSSD Week. In 2019, more than 47,000 member employees and first responders at over 4,500 jobsites, from 324 organizations, took part in the stand down. Together, they learned the importance of being safe around their jobsite excavations.
“An Unprotected Trench Can Be an Early Grave” is one of the more powerful messages our industry has used for our past June events. Sadly, for 17 industry workers and their families in 2018, that turned out to be more than a message. We must seek out every measure possible to reduce risks on our jobsites, which we all know can be a dangerous place to work if someone is unaware of its hazards.
This annual June event is expected to evolve over the following years as the TSSD continues to grow. Be sure to check out NUCA’s social media channels on Twitter (@NUCA_National), Facebook (NUCA1964), LinkedIn (NUCA National), Instagram (NUCA_National), and our revamped YouTube channel (NUCA National).
This article was written by Robert Baylor, NUCA Communications Director.