County crew recognized for role in trench rescue

Rylie McClurgOur Town Outdoors, Powell

Although the Knox County Engineering and Public Works Department focused these last couple of weeks on clearing the roads of snow, we have also had a couple of other noteworthy projects underway.


Justin Zachary poses with Knox County’s Jet-Vac. He and two other crew members were recognized this week for their role in the Jan. 13 trench collapse rescue.

On January 13, a trench collapsed, trapping two construction workers under almost 10 feet of wet clay. The fire department called us at 12:30 p.m., and we sent Aric Hughett, Justin Zachary and Michael Trent to assist recovery efforts with the Jet-Vac truck. This truck is typically used to clear pipes, but on this day, it was used to vacuum the dirt from around the two men. Since the location of one of the workers was unknown, this method was safer for recovering the men unharmed, rather than shoveling. Our crew was on the scene until 8:30 p.m. making sure both workers were recovered safely from the trench. We are so grateful that both men made it out alive. On Monday, Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs and the Knox County Commission recognized our three crew members for their quick action and excellent work.

Last week, we had crews at 10317 Coward Mill Road removing a condemned house to make way for the Coward Mill Road Widening Project to support the new northwest elementary school.

Additionally, crews were on site in District 6 to clean a property that was identified as a health and safety risk. Help us keep the community safe by using our SeeClickFix program, found on our website here or downloaded from the app store.

Here’s some pictures from other work around the county this past week:

Rylie McClurg is the communications and outreach coordinator for Knox County Engineering and Public Works

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