Utility companies are always looking for ways to ensure their employees are safe. One of the risks involved in working with any type of underground lines is in working in trenches.
Trenches, depending on the soil composition, the amount of moisture in the soil or even the depth of the trench, poses several concerns. The greatest of these is a collapse of the sides of the trench, allowing soil, rocks and other types of material to flow into the trench, trapping or even covering workers.
Options to Consider
In the past, the trenches could be shored up with wood beams and panels or steel panel options. These materials were heavy and difficult to move, and these factors meant they were typically only used when unstable soil was a known issue in the area.
Today, there is the option to use an aluminum trench box. This offers the benefits of the lightweight of aluminum, combined with the natural strength of the alloy. Additionally, aluminum is naturally corrosion-resistant, which means it is protected from rusting even if scratched and scuffed by soil, rocks, sand, and clay.
Companies offering the aluminum trench box design typically provide a range of different sizes to meet the needs of any utility. These boxes are designed to be easy to stack and store, and also easy to deploy and move as the job progresses. In most case, one person can easily install and move the aluminum trench box, and they can be designed with wheels that roll along the top edges of the trench, allowing for extremely easy and convenient positioning.
Some of the top trench boxes can also come with ends, which allows for complete protection from unstable soil on all sides. This is ideal for any type of shaft-type work, and it saves money by not needing different safety equipment for the various types of jobs.
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