Questions & Answers

Correct Answer
weighs less than a person.
weighs more than one tonne.
is not heavy enough to kill someone.
is enough to kill if it falls on top of a person.
because of benching
less than 2.5m deep.
because of the overuse of trench boxes.
more than 3.5m deep.
plenty of water and soil.
safe access and egress.
walings and struts to climb.
movements in the timbering.
Weekly by the site supervisor
At least once a day by a competent person
At least once a month by a competent person
Every day by the person working in the excavation
use a strong metal ladder.
use a securely fixed ladder.
climb on the walings and struts.
jump in and out if the excavation is not too deep.
water is poured on the soil.
the site is inspected weekly.
the sides are sloped or battered.
stop blocks are provided at the top.
The excavation must be lit during darkness.
Security personnel should patrol the excavation.
No other work should be allowed to take place on site until the excavation work is completed.
Suitable barriers must be placed around the excavation.
Well-anchored stop blocks
A signaller to guide the driver
Red and white buntings on stakes
A fence with stakes and marker tape
A hard hat and goggles
A hard hat and a raincoat
A hard hat and steel-toe boots
A hard hat, steel-toe boots and hi-vis jacket
they are over 18 years of age.
they are trained and over 18 years of age.
they are competent and authorised to do so.
someone is outside in case they need to be rescued.
To prevent the sides collapsing
To prevent people from falling in
To mark where work is complete
To prevent unauthorised persons entering the excavation
A trench less than 2m deep is safe.
An excavation site never needs supporting.
An excavation needs inspecting once a week.
An excavation can be classed as a confined space.
When the foreman cannot be present to supervise
When the local authority inspector cannot be present to supervise
When any gas valves in the road or footpath need turning on or off
When erecting, modifying or removing devices and where pedestrians and cyclists are diverted onto the roadway
Switch off the machine engine and continue working
Everyone should leave the excavation area as soon as possible.
Using a mobile phone, the site manager should be contacted immediately. 
The local authority should be contacted and workers should stay on site until they arrive.
It keeps the site tidy
 So nothing obstructs vehicles
To avoid the excavation collapsing
Having them close to the site saves time
A HSA inspector must be on site at all times
Local Authority approval is necessary
A brick wall must be built around the area
Stop blocks and hazard warning lights must be used 
prevent people or vehicles from falling in.
let workers know exactly where the manhole is.
make them more visible on CCTV surveillance cameras.
ensure the contractor closes them when the work is finished.
To provide markers showing where the excavation site is
To prevent materials, such as soil and rock, falling into the excavation
To provide a foothold for climbing in and out of the excavation
To stop vehicles going too close to the edge of the excavation when tipping materials
The safety officer
The site foreman
A local authority inspector
A CSCS Health and Safety at Roadworks or Signing, Lighting and Guarding card holder
Face masks should be worn. 
Clean air should be blown into the excavation.
Work should continue with no precautions taken.
Send someone else in to do the work
Do not enter.
Ask an apprentice to go on your behalf.
Two non-permitted operatives may enter if one supervises the other.
Entry is only allowed if you are wearing the correct personal protective equipment.
Personal protective equipment is easily damaged.
It can be impossible to get a phone signal if there is an emergency.
It is easy to miscalculate exposure to the sun and therefore get burnt.
Trenches can cave in or contact can be made with exposed underground services.
A draft permit must be produced.
A historical ground investigation report must be assessed.
The area must be scanned for underground services.
A photograph must be taken of the ground that will be excavated.
Red 'No go' signs
Tower lights lighting up the trench
Stop blocks placed along the edge of the trench
A secure 1m-high fence around the perimeter of the trench
Support the sides with a trench box or by sloping the sides.
Support the sides by placing stop blocks at the trench sides.
Support the sides by adding water to the soil to help it solidify.
Support the sides by placing suitable barriers around the top of the trench.
Continue working at a slower pace
Sit down for few minutes and take deep breaths
Get out immediately and report to the supervisor
Get out immediately, rest for a few minutes and return to work
Weekly by the site supervisor
Monthly by a competent person
At least once a day by a competent person
Once in the lifetime of the excavation.
Only the supervisor
Only the rescue personnel
A person designated by the site manager
A trained, competent and authorised person
Adequate training, a risk assessment and personal protective equipment
A permit to work, a risk assessment, adequate training and personal protective equipment
A safety helmet, goggles, a permit to work, a planned entry and respiratory protective equipment
A permit to work, a risk assessment, a planned entry, rescue arrangements, respiratory protective equipment and adequate training
A risk assessment
A safe system of work plan
A written contract for the work
A company health and safety policy
Enter and look for clues
Smell the atmosphere after entry
Sample the atmosphere with a gas detector
Provide employees with breathing apparatus
People will start sweating
There is a risk of explosion
There is a risk of debris falling
People could lose consciousness
Use a fixed ladder
Use a safety harness 
Use an excavator bucket
Use the shoring props and trench supports
Leave the trench immediately.
Keep working, but ask a colleague to get the lorry to move.
Continue working as the lorry does not pose a threat or a danger to you.
As the excavation is only shallow, continue working as the lorry will move eventually.
Deep excavations
Toxic and flammable gases
Sloping or battering of trench sides
An accumulation of oxygen that has seeped through the soil
Prior to a soil survey
At the start of each shift
When shoring is installed
During deep excavations only
Underground services
An excavation dug in unstable soil    
Edge protection at the top of the excavation 
Excessive vibration from construction equipment or vehicle traffic around the excavation
Use a fixed ladder
Use the shoring supports
Use the excavator bucket to be lifted in and out
Use a colleague to pull yourself up/lower yourself down
A specialist engineer's soil survey
A risk assessment by a competent person
A survey of the equipment by a trained and experienced person
A warning about any unstable adjacent structures from their owner(s)/the public
dig footholds for getting in and out of the excavation
install shoring.
erect overhead services.
inspect the excavation.
Breathing apparatus must always be used.
Entry must be made under a permit-to-work system.
A safe working plan for the confined working space must be made.
Adequate emergency arrangements must be in place before the work starts.
Use a metal detector
Speak directly with the contractor who may remember where they laid the cable
Use the utility plan showing the location of the electrical cable
Use the architect plans with the architect onsite to point to the exact location
Reinforced struts
Securely fixed ladders
Properly maintained walings
Any carefully stacked construction materials
the foreman.
the HSA inspector.
a competent person.
the excavator operator.
safe systems of work plan.
adequate training for all concerned.
possession of a scaffolding card.
working in teams of four
A permit-to-work
A risk assessment
A method statement 
A Safe System of Work Plan (SSWP)
An aluminium scoop shovel
An insulated shovel or spade
Any tool as long as you have rubber gloves and wellington boots on
Do not hand dig and only use an excavator to prevent electric shocks
Slipping and falling into the excavation
Being trapped and crushed by collapsing sides which are unsupported
Suffering from skin abrasions when your hands, arms and legs touch the side of the trench
Contaminated ground conditions and breathing in the hazardous dust that may be caused by the excavation