Man trapped in trench for hours is OK

Posted: Updated:

Investigators say the accident that left a man in a trench for hours Thursday night should never have happened.

Rubin Duque, 20, was trapped in the trench when it collapsed around him. He was stuck for nearly four hours, until rescue workers finally pulled him out. He was buried up to his neck.

Duque had been digging a trench for drain pipes at a home. He was working for a company called DT Enterprises, out of Unionville.

Kiryas Joel Fire Chief Joshua Blumenthal, who responded to the call, says the accident could have been avoided if the trench was properly shored up. ?It wasn?t secured at all,? he says.

Monroe Building Inspector William Muente visited the site, and reports there were no signs of support, meaning the walls of the trench didn?t just crumble. Inspectors from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration were on the scene Friday, but they have not issued any citations yet.

The owner of DT Enterprises had no comment.

Duque was taken to Westchester Medical Center for treatment, and is doing well.

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