Excavation is an important part of construction, preparing the ground for the installation of new buildings and structures. Typically, excavation involves the removal of rock, soil or other materials. For excavations near roads, it is necessary to secure the area with fencing or plating. Other requirements for an excavation may include drilling and heavy machinery.
For development-led excavations, professional archaeologists may be hired. During the planning process, a site survey is conducted to identify the extent of the site and the required level of excavation. The survey may also involve testing pits.
For excavations that are located near roads, the design and operation must be inspected by the road controlling authority. The traffic management plan must contain a detailed plan of how excavations will be protected and how traffic will be managed during the excavation. The traffic management plan must include the closure of lanes and the safe movement of traffic during excavation.
During an excavation, it is important to consider all the hazards that are associated with the work. Risks can arise from falling debris, ground collapsing or other events that may endanger workers or members of the public. Therefore, a PCBU must ensure that all health and safety risks are controlled. This involves thinking about how a harmful event could occur and putting plans in place to eliminate them.
In addition, excavation can affect the stability of nearby structures. For example, spoil placed on a high side of an excavation can increase the risk of ground collapse. The amount of risk is determined by the location of the excavation, the depth of the excavation, the soil conditions and the amount of weight that is being placed on the excavation. If the excavation is constructed on favourable ground conditions, it should be possible to safely carry out the work. However, there are a variety of risks involved, and the PCBU should make sure that everyone in the excavation team is informed of the dangers and how to minimize them.
As an excavating project moves forward, the PCBU must review their control plans. This involves engaging with the workers, discussing their concerns and reviewing the controls to ensure a safe working environment. A traffic management plan should include a map of the area of the excavation and the methods that will be used to protect it.
When designing an excavation, the PCBU must ensure that the plan is comprehensive and includes the proper sequencing of the work, measures to control dust and noise, and the correct use of equipment. The plan should include all permits that are required by the local authority. It should also contain the steps to be taken to control the impact of the excavation on the surrounding environment.
Excavation can be a fascinating and rewarding way to explore an area’s history and culture. It provides a unique opportunity to discover objects of historical interest. But, it is not always an easy task. As with any other type of construction, the risks involved with excavation can be overwhelming.