Man killed in trench collapse identified, crews recover his body

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LEE'S SUMMIT, Mo. -- Police have identified the man killed in a trench collapsed Thursday afternoon as Brian D. Allen, 49, of Windsor, Mo. Crews recovered Allen's body around 3 p.m. on Friday, which was more than 24 hours after the trench collapsed.

Allen was working in a trench that was about 17 feet deep in the 1000 block of SW Drake Circle where a number of home are being constructed in Lee's Summit, Mo. Allen was connecting a sewer line from a house to a city sewer line when the earth caved in.

Crews from both the Lee's Summit Fire Department and Kansas City Fire Department responded shortly before 2 p.m. on Thursday and worked through the night and into Friday morning in an effort to recover his body. Crews on scene said the trench is very unstable and they are having to carefully excavate the dirt, described as wet, clay-based soil, in order to get to Allen's body.

"We could have never dreamed that it would take us this long, but I think our commitment is that we're going to get it right no matter how long it takes us," said Sgt. Chris Depue. "They talk about the technical and the complexity of it. For every four feet that they dig, they're required to shore that again with another four-panel."

Allen's relatives arrived at the scene Thursday soon after the accident was reported. They have remained on site since then. A family in the area has opened their home to them during this difficult time.

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