At Dial Before You Dig, safety of those working around infrastructure assets and the community is of high priority. At every stage of the project, whether it is a small or large fencing job, there are measures that can be taken to ensure the safety of those involved.
Below is a basic outline of measures to be taken:
It begins with lodging a FREE Dial Before You Dig enquiry at least two business days prior to starting your project.
Just Before You Start
Use the plans and a visual inspection to see if there are any hazards or potentially any dangerous physical obstructions that may impact your safety and find suitable solutions.
When Locating Assets
Plans provided by asset owner(s) only indicate the presence of assets and DO NOT pinpoint the exact location.
Unfortunately, not all of Australia’s asset owners are Members of Dial Before You Dig and assumptions SHOULD NOT be made that the plans received represent the only assets affected by the job.
The Five Ps of Safe Site Practice
Following the Five Ps of Safe Site Practice guidelines can ensure the right steps are taken.
Plan by lodging your Dial Before You Dig enquiry at least two business days before starting any excavation to ensure you have the correct information and safety measures in place.
Prepare by reviewing the utility plans and contacting the utility if you need assistance. Look for onsite asset and infrastructure clues such as pit lids, marker posts and meters. Engage a DBYD Certified Locator which includes undertaking electronic location prior to potholing.
To establish the exact location of all underground infrastructure(s), pothole if permitted using the asset owner’s stated method as specified on the asset owner’s plan and / or information pack.
If potholing has occurred, protect the infrastructure by using various methods; such as communicating to all working on site, erecting barriers and / or marking the location of the exposed infrastructure.
You should only proceed with your excavation work after you have planned, potholed (unless prohibited) and have protective measures in place.
When You Have Finished
Once the job is complete, ensure no infrastructure asset(s) have been damaged and any exposed underground asset(s) uncovered by the project has been filled back in.
This article was published in Fencit April 2019 – What are the 5Ps of Safe Site Practice.