Warren County man, 25, killed in trench collapse

SALEM TWP., Warren County — UPDATE @ 8 p.m. (Dec. 28):

The worker killed in a trench collapse today was identified as 25-year-old Zachary Hess of Mason, according to the Warren County Coroner’s Office.

UPDATE @ 7:45 p.m.

Despite valiant rescue efforts, a worker trapped when a trench collapsed at a home construction site has died.

  • JK Excavating worker dies in trench collapse
  • Trench about 20 to 30 feet deep at new home site
  • Rescue crews from multiple jurisdictions responded

The JK Excavating employee, whose name was not released, was buried at least 25 to 30 feet underground just before noon in the 5500 block of Anne Marie Drive in The Woodlands subdivision near Morrow.

Live images from the scene show firefighters use shovels to dig in the area of the trapped worker. Our media partner WCPO-TV in Cincinnati shared aerial footage from their news helicopter.

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Lt. John Faine of the Warren County Sheriff’s Office said the victim initially was partly visible but the soil was so loose it eventually covered the worker.

Multiple fire crews dispatched for a tactical rescue and two Hamilton County Urban Search and Rescue vehicles tried to free the worker.

Despite efforts to rescue the victim, the amount of dirt covering him and the length of time he was buried officials said there was no way the victim could have survived, Faine said.

Emergency radio traffic from the scene indicates a building inspector from Warren County has been requested. School buses also were been requested to help with crew rotation and keeping rescuers warm in the freezing cold.


One person is reportedly trapped after a trench collapsed in Morrow, Warren County Thursday.

RELATED: Sister of man ‘buried alive’ files suit in Washington Twp. trench death

Fire crews were dispatched for a tactical rescue in the 5500 block of Anne Marie Drive around 11:55 a.m. Thursday.

Additional details were not immediately available.

We’ll update this page as we learn more.