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The 1-Hour Excavations course is a Site Safety Training (SST) Special Elective that provides an overview of excavations and underpinning activities. This awareness-level training explains how to recognize and avoid common hazards of excavation work in New York City, including soil failures and structural collapse. The course covers OSHA's Excavations Standard (29 CFR 1926.650 Subpart P).

About the 1-Hour Excavations Course

SST Standards

Satisfies Training Standards for:

Site Safety Training (SST) requirements of NYC Local Law 196

Accessibility Features

Accessibility Features:

Free audio narration and Live Chat support


Approved by:

New York City Department of Buildings (DOB)

Online Course


100% online course

Instant Cert


Instant digital certificate for 1 Special Elective hour of Site Safety Training

NYC Workers

Designed for:

NYC construction and demolition workers who need an SST Worker card or SST Supervisor card

Who Should Take 1-Hour Excavations?

The 1-Hour Excavations course is an SST Special Elective designed for New York City construction workers seeking an SST Worker or Supervisor card.

NYC Construction workers who require this training may include:

  • Construction and demolition workers
  • Construction Superintendents
  • Site Safety Coordinators
  • Site Safety Managers
  • Competent Persons
  • Journeypersons and forepersons
  • Other workers at jobsites that require a Site Safety Plan

For more information on SST requirements, including who it affects and important training deadlines, see our guide to Local Law 196.

Course Details

The 1-Hour Excavations course introduces terms and components associated with excavations and the underpinning process. You'll also learn about protective systems that keep workers safe and some important roles and responsibilities of excavation safety professionals.

This course is 100% online and approved by the New York City Department of Buildings (DOB). It provides one hour of SST Special Elective credit that NYC construction workers can apply toward their full SST card.

Benefits of 1-Hour Excavations

  • Train at your own pace
  • Guaranteed to pass
  • Provides 0.1 Continuing Education Units (CEUs)
  • Audio narration
  • Interactive quizzes

The course takes at least one hour to complete. You must pass a five-question quiz at the end of each module and a 20-question comprehensive final exam. The exam and all quizzes are multiple choice, and you have an unlimited number of attempts to pass. You must complete the final exam in one sitting.

You are required to score at least 80% on each quiz and at least 70% on the final exam to receive SST course credit. Once you pass each quiz and the final exam, you can instantly download a digital Certificate of Completion. You must complete your training within 180 days of purchase.

This course does not provide an SST card. To get your SST card, you need to finish all your required training and submit your course certificates to OSHA Education Center or another DOB-approved Site Safety Training provider.

» Learn more about DOB course requirements for SST cards

NYC Site Safety Training courses give you the opportunity to earn IACET CEUs through our parent company Certus. As an IACET Accredited Provider, Certus offers IACET CEUs for its learning events that comply with the ANSI/IACET Continuing Education and Training Standard.

» See our IACET accreditation

Learning Objectives

This course is designed to give New York City construction workers a basic understanding of excavation safety. It covers hazards, protective systems, roles and responsibilities, and ways excavation projects affect utility services and transportation in New York City.

Upon completing the course, you will be able to:

  • Define terms associated with excavations and underpinning activities
  • State how you can recognize, avoid and prevent safety issues concerning soil failures, undermining and structural collapse
  • Name the responsibilities of permit holders to project adjoining structures
  • Describe the role of Competent Persons in excavations

You can find an outline of all course modules below.

Course Outline

This course is divided into three modules on excavation safety. Each module ends with a brief quiz, and you must complete a final exam to receive your SST training credit.


The course introduction provides a brief overview of the course, including key learning objectives and facts about Site Safety Training.

Module 1: Excavations and Underpinning Activities

Topics covered in Module 1 include:

  • Soil science
  • Protective systems
  • Excavation roles and responsibilities

Learning objectives include:

  • List common components of an excavation site
  • Describe the underpinning process
  • Name the roles of different professionals on an excavation site

Module 2: Excavation Hazards

Topics covered in Module 2 include:

  • Trench collapse and cave-ins
  • Other excavation hazards
  • Excavation case studies

Learning objectives include:

  • Describe the cave-in hazards present during excavation projects on construction worksites
  • Name the fall, confined space and environmental hazards present during excavation projects on the construction worksite

Module 3: Urban Excavations and Safety Resources

Topics covered in Module 3 include:

  • Excavating within New York City
  • Safety resources for workers

Learning objectives include:

  • State how excavation projects affect utility and transportation systems in New York City
  • Describe how construction sites protect utility and transportation systems around New York City
  • List OSHA and ANSI/ASME resources that address workers' rights to a safe workplace

The course ends with an exam that assesses the student's comprehension and understanding of all course and module objectives.