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Body of Calgary worker, buried in trench, recovered

Members of the fire department's technical rescue team have recovered the body of a man who died after being buried in a trench.

The Calgary Fire Department was called to the scene in the community of Charleswood at 10:45 a.m.

When they arrived, they found a worker had been buried in a trench that had been dug to access a sewer line.

Officials say one of the walls collapsed and buried him.

His body was recovered on Thursday night.

The worker is believed to be in his late 20s and was employed by a private plumbing company.

A safety expert CTV News spoke with on Thursday says lax safety protocol may have been to blame for his death.

"This is something that should not happen," said Calgary-based Dean Whinan, whose work includes improving safety on workplaces on a daily basis.

"We know how to protect people in excavations or, in this case, ungrounding of the earth. And this is absolutely senseless."

The Calgary Fire Department responds to a trench collapse in the community of Charleswood on Thursday, June 8, 2023.

Fire officials say the hole was approximately three to six metres (10 to 20 feet) deep before in collapsed and the worker was buried in dirt, sand and retaining wall materials.

The victim has not been identified.

Alberta's Occupational Health and Safety and the Calgary Police Service are conducting investigations into the incident.

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