Smoke Detectors Save Lives!
If you don't have a working Smoke Detector, please contact your local fire department or MetroCall



                                                              Trench Patch

2013 Training Schedule

January 12 Annual meeting Highview FD #1, 0900-1200

April 11,12,13

Quarterly Training Location TBD    0900-1300
July 18,19,20 Quarterly Training Location TBD    0900-1300
Oct, 17,18,19 Quarterly Training Location TBD    0900-1300

The Jefferson County Trench Rescue Team announces a Trench Rescue Technician class on the following dates:  Classes will be held in Jefferson County.

May  17th  6p-10pm
May  18th  8a-5p
May  19th  8a-5p

June  7th   6p-10p
June  8th   8a-5p
June  9th   8a-5p

Students MUST ATTEND ALL 6 classes to receive a certificate.
Class size Max 30, Min 20
Cost: Free to those training/responding with the Trench Team,  all others $100.00.  Food and lodging on your own.
Please do not register if you are not sure you can attend ALL training dates.

If interested send the following info to:  REGISTRATION DEADLINE May 1st.

Student FULL NAME:
Student mailing address
Student department
Student email address
Student phone number


Trench Rescue & Collapse Rescue Team

Team Structure

6801 - Chris Gosnell, Okolona 6804 - George Givens, Camp Taylor 6807 - Robb Williams, P.R.P.
6802 - Rob Dwyer, Highview 6805 - Bob Frizzell, Jeffersontown 6808 - Bruce Broecker, Lyndon
6803 - Vacant 6806 - Vacant 6809 - Vacant


In the early 1990's a group of firefighters and paramedics from Jefferson County Fire Service put together a Trench Rescue Team. This group of men and women sat down and determined how they could make this program work. The personnel requirements alone would overwhelm any of the 21 County fire districts, depleting them of manpower for normal fire/rescue responses. The Trench Rescue team needed a large group of personnel trained in trench rescue techniques , expensive equipment and the logistics to bring them all together.

According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration, excavating is recognized as one of the most hazardous construction operations.  OSHA recently revised Sub-part P, Excavations, of 29 CFR 1926.650, 29 CFR 1926.651, and 29 CFR 1926.652 to make the standard easier to understand, permit the use of performance criteria where possible, and provide construction employers with options when classifying soil and selecting employee protection methods. reference:


Trench team members have specialized training to respond to trapped persons in open excavations defined as trenches.  An excavation that is deeper than it is wide and narrower than it is long, is a trench.  Occupational Safety & Health Administration regulations require trenches to be secure before workers enter them for any reason.  When that regulation is violated and a person is trapped as a result of a trench wall collapse, we are called to affect the rescue, or unfortunately, sometimes a recovery.  Trenches are dangerous because when they collapse. the dirt surrounds the victim and depending on the soil make-up, it can crush the victim and suffocate them in a matter of minutes. 
Specialized Rescue Capabilities
Team members are trained to one of three levels of certification under National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards.  We have Technician, Operations and Competent Person certified members from all 18 suburban fire districts, and Louisville Metro Emergency Medical Service (LMEMS) on the Trench Rescue Team.  Each person brings their own unique talents and experience to the team.
Specialized Rescue Equipment
The team uses special rescue equipment like Air Shores, Shore-form Panels made from extremely strong plywood and various adapters and hardware to assemble and install shoring that protects the rescuers while they excavate hundreds of pounds of dirt to reach trapped victims.  Most of the digging is accomplished with hand trowels and small shovels to prevent injuring the patient as we dig them out.  The trench has to be made safe for entry before the rescue operation can begin.
Removing one trapped patient can take as long as several hours due to the time it takes to build the shoring around them and then dig them out.  Heavy rescue trucks equipped with all of our equipment are deployed across the Metro Louisville area to expedite response to any area we may be needed.
Shared Resources
Many of the special rescue tools used for trench rescue are also used by other disciplines such as confined space rescue, structural collapse, heavy rescue and even the rope equipment can be utilized by the water rescue, and high angle teams.  Most of the equipment trucks and trailers are utilized for all the special teams since the gear is inter-changeable.


Home ] Up ]

Copyright 2010 Jefferson County Fire Service
Last modified: 01/30/14