HOOVER, Ala. (WIAT)– Two men were pronounced dead following a partial trench collapse in Hoover Tuesday evening. Dozens of first responders were on the scene as a rescue mission became a recovery mission.
It took fire and rescue nearly 3 hours to get to the two men that were buried underground in a Hoover neighborhood. The two men were installing a water drainage system. When the trench collapsed, they were somewhere between the surface and 8 feet under.
First responders received a call at 3:04 p.m. and since then, crews have been working tirelessly to get to the men. The Fire Captain explained the crews had to dig by hand and with small shovels because large equipment or machinery could have worsened the situation.
The Hoover Fire Chief this recovery effort took immense expertise.
“This was an extremely difficult scene for them to work. It’s not something that happens or goes quickly. A lot of people expect it to go within a matter of minutes. In this particular situation, to protect our personnel, to make sure they’re doing everything according to SOG’s, that we do it the right way.”CLAY BENTLEY; HOOVER FIRE CHIEF
The fire chief offered his condolences for the families who just received the worst possible news.
“It wasn’t an easy task, but we would like to offer condolences to the family. The loss of anybody’s life, that touches us,” says Bentley.
Frank Brocato, the Hoover mayor, was on scene through the recovery mission. He was a firefighter for over 40 years and said the cases hit harder.
“It’s very difficult, I don’t care how long you’ve been in the business or what you’ve seen. When individuals lose their lives, it’s very difficult for everyone,” says Frank Brocato.
OSHA was on the scene investigating. The names of the two victims have not yet been released.