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A recent review of fatalities, accidents, injuries and near misses in New Brunswick has led us to direct our attention toward trenching safety.

There has been no change in legislation, but we will be keeping a close eye on these operations throughout the province.

What does zero tolerance mean for your operations?
WorkSafeNB will be strictly enforcing the regulations around trenching procedures. If we encounter violations of these laws, there will be zero tolerance.

Zero tolerance means any or all of the following:

  • Stop work orders
  • Restricting use of equipment
  • Fines
  • Imprisonment

Resource materials
To ensure that you are operating within the law, please review the resources we have made available. These materials are there to help you and to answer your questions. For specific information about trenching requirements, refer to the General Regulation 91-191. In particular, sections 180-188 deal specifically with trenching. Other materials include:

Zero Tolerance!

Hazard Alert
New Brunswick Worker Buried Alive

Safety Talks
#19 Trenching - Protection

#20 Trenching - Inspection

#25 Underground Utility Locates

Trenching near utility lines or piping

Checklist for Trenching and Excavation

You are welcome to print these items for your use and to distribute them to those who will benefit from this information. We also have a trenching sticker available. Please contact for your free sticker and for more information on WorkSafeNB publications.

The New Brunswick Construction Safety Association (NBCSA)  offers workshops on trenching awareness. For more information, visit or call 506 627-1477.

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