They Should Have Located the Water Main

Broken Water Main

William Gulya, Jr., Excavation and Construction Site Safety Expert ::::
Case Synopsis: A general contractor hired a drilling company to auger into the ground to accommodate the installation of a testing/monitoring well next to a large warehouse that stored high-end electrical components and devices. The general contractor had previous knowledge that there was a 12” high-pressure water main in close proximity to where they intended to auger and install the monitoring well. The contractor met with the drilling company and informed them of the existence of the 12” water main. The contractor then called the underground utility locating agency also known as One Call System. Shortly after the request to locate and mark out the existing underground utilities, the city-owned and operated water company marked out its underground line(s). However, the 12” high-pressure water main was not marked. The contractor directed the drilling company it hired to drill, despite its knowledge there was an existing 12” high-pressure water main in close proximity to the drilling location that was not marked/located. The drilling company, despite the knowledge the water main existed and was not marked, complied and began drilling. Low and behold, twenty minutes after the drilling began they drilled directly through the high-pressure water main. The geyser reached more than twenty feet high, and the water flow was so forceful and voluminous it flooded the warehouse causing massive damage to both the building and its contents. Continue reading “They Should Have Located the Water Main”

Deadly Machines

William Gulya, Jr., Excavation and Construction Site Safety Expert ::::
The case involved an employee (plaintiff) who was working at a residential construction project for the installation of a cable conduit. He was operating and/or working with an Astec Maxi-Sneaker Series C Trencher with a Hydra-Borer attachment.
The scope of work was, in general, to bore under a driveway so that a Fios cable could be installed. The employee was standing at the side of the trench, using a shovel to guide the horizontal direction of the rod while applying force with his foot on the rod to counter the forces that would cause the drilling rod to change direction. Shortly after the horizontal drill began, the employee’s pant leg was caught by the rotating drilling rod. It entangled his right leg, which resulted in severe injury, and ultimately amputation of the employee’s right leg above the knee. Continue reading “Deadly Machines”