Monday, September 12, 2016

Worker with Northwest water and sewer killed in trench collapse in Camden, SC


A man has died in a trench collapse in Camden.

The Kershaw County Coroner identified the man as 25-year-old Juan Penaloza of Columbia.

Penaloza and another man were working on a sewer and water line project in a trench about 7 feet deep on Ancrum Road near Union Street when it collapsed shortly before noon, according to Camden City Manager Mel Pearson.

One of the men managed to escape safely, however, Penaloza did not. Camden city EMS got to the scene within 10 minutes but were not able to save the victim, who died on the scene.

Pearson said a trench box or other excavation wall support was not in place to prevent a cave in. That precaution would have been the responsibility of the subcontractor, Northwest water and sewer, the city manager said.

Recovery of the victim took extra time because of the unsafe status of the trench, Pearson said. Emergency responders had to construct a stabilization system so they could work in the trench safely, according to Pearson.

An OSHA investigator arrived on scene about 3 p.m.

The City of Camden is assisting OSHA with the investigation.