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Construction and Remodel Safety
Safety Instruction Number:42
Last Update:Tue, 09/11/2007
- Oregon-OSHA and DEQ regulations on asbestos, lead, and silica require that building materials be sampled prior to demolition, replacement, or remodeling
- OSU construction safety policy requires sampling for any construction/remodeling that will impact any of the following building materials, surfaces, or equipment
- Floor Tiles
- Insulation on Plumbing
- Laboratory Benches, Cabinets, and Other Laboratory Furnishings
- Fume Hoods
Sampling and Surveys
- List does not cover ALL regulated material
- When requested (7-2273), EH&S will perform necessary sampling prior to any demolition activities
- Sample analysis fees may be the responsibility of the requesting Department/Unit
- EH&S will consult with departments after the sample results are evaluated
- Regulatory fines issued by OR-OSHA or DEQ for improper demolition or disposal will be the responsibility of the department or unit
- Special rules apply to excavations. The most serious hazard of trenches is cave-in due to improper shoring and sloping of the trench.
- Other injuries are caused by work activities performed in the trench, including accidents due to falling materials, machinery, and exposure to noxious gases.
- Electrocution from utility lines or pipes, and slips and falls while climbing in and out of trenches are other hazards.
- Factors to consider before shoring or sloping are:
- Determine the location of underground pipes, electrical, gas, sewage, or fuel lines before digging.
- Trench depth: If the trench is 5 feet deep or more, it must be shored or sloped. If there is a possibility of soil movement, even shallower trenches have to be shored. If there is any doubt -- shore or slope the trench.
- Running Soils: The more liquid the soil, the more you need to use additional types of shoring
- Changing Weather Conditions: Hard packed soil can become soupy and unstable after rain. Trenches which are safely sloped or shored in dry weather can be very dangerous in wet weather.
- Heavy loads in the area: Don't park heavy equipment next to a trench. Nearby structures such as buildings, curbs, trees, and utility poles will exert stress on trench shoring.
- Vibration: If you are digging a trench near a roadway or where other operations create vibration, make the shoring strong enough to withstand the added stress.
- If a trench is 5 feet deep or more, work should be supervised by an individual knowledgeable about trench safety.
- Always shore from the top down, and take it out from the bottom up.
- Keep water away from trench banks.
- Make sure electrical lines and cables are grounded, guarded or de-energized.
- Make sure that shoring material is the right kind, in good condition, and free of defects.
- Place soil removed from the trench at least two feet from the trench rim.
- Always wear hard hats and other necessary protective equipment.
- Notify a supervisor when working in a trench.
- For easy, safe and quick exit, set exit ladders every 25 feet for trenches greater than 4 feet deep.
- Post warning signs and barricade areas that may be dangerous to employees or the public.