One person dies in trench collapse in Rhea County

Knoxville Fire Department crews were dispatched to Rhea County to assist in a trench collapse that trapped two people Saturday evening.
Published: Apr. 16, 2022 at 7:20 PM EDT|Updated: Apr. 17, 2022 at 7:06 PM EDT
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RHEA COUNTY, Tenn. (WVLT) - A man was found dead in a Rhea County trench collapse early Sunday morning, according to a report.

Knoxville Fire Department crews were dispatched to the county to assist in a trench collapse that trapped a person Saturday evening. Multiple agencies also responded to the site, with the Rhea County Sheriff’s Office leading the response, according to Mark Willbanks with Knoxville Fire.

According to RCSO Detective Rocky Potter, a 911 call came in around 2 p.m. reporting that two construction workers were digging a trench next to a garage in the Rivermyst gated community when it collapsed. He said the collapse covered about 2/3 of the trench and prompted a response from Cumberland County, Crossville, Hamilton County, Knoxville, and Rhea County emergency crews.

According to WTVC, Potter said crews recovered a worker’s body around 1:00 a.m. Sunday. Although the initial report shared that two men were trapped, the detective reportedly said that only one man was trapped.

Trench collapses sometimes occur on construction sites when dig sites fall in, sometimes burying workers. In January, a Powell construction site suffered a trench collapse where two workers were trapped for hours.

This is a developing story.

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