2 workers killed after trench collapses in Shoreline

Police lights

SHORELINE, Wash. (AP) — Crews retrieved the bodies of two men killed in a trench collapse Monday afternoon.

“It was on a very steep slope. It’s just an unstable surface for us to continue,” Michelle Pidduck with the Shoreline Fire Department said.

Washington State Labor and Industries officials were dispatched to the scene. Pidduck said the men were private employees but she did not know who hired them.

Recent permitting records with the city show that a resident was replacing part of a collapsed side sewer on private property.

At around 8:30 p.m., three vacuum trucks with long hose leads arrived in an attempt to suck up loose soil and alleviate pressure around where the men’s bodies were buried so they can be safely extricated. Pidduck later said the attempts to use the vacuum trucks failed.

“The dirt was too hard and too packed,” she said.

Pidduck said the men’s bodies were buried beneath “at least 3 feet of Earth.” Medics initially on the scene were able to connect with part of them that was exposed enough to use an automated external defibrillator. No heart activity was detected.

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