Hydro excavation is one of the safest, least destructive, and most environment-friendly excavation methods there is.
In fact, hydro excavation equipment is often used as a best practice for most infrastructure projects. It only uses water and air jets to loosen surface materials and remove loose components using powerful suction tubes.
What Makes It So Safe?
Hydro excavation has many benefits due to the fact it uses non-mechanical sources, unlike backhoes and trenchers, to complete any task or project so it does not impact or cause any structural damage to the work area and its surroundings.
It also helps to avoid any potential damage to underground utilities like gas pipes, electrical lines, plumbing, fibre optics and many others.
Backhoes and trenchers account for the highest percentage in underground utilities and structural damages.
Is It Foolproof?
Like any industrial equipment, hydro excavation can still cause damage and other risks if you do not observe proper handling and procedures. Safety must be observed at all times.
Hydro Excavation Safety
Excavation, no matter how safe the equipment you are using, is still a risky job. This is why at Pressure Works we take safety seriously and make it a priority for everybody on-site and the environment.
We make sure that we follow all the necessary safety protocols when operating hydrovac equipment.
With us, safety always starts with the right equipment and highly trained professionals who understand how to operate safely from the start of the project until completion. We do this by ensuring the following:
- Use pressurised water for softening and breaking up the ground to dig out.
- Remove all dirt and debris using the vacuum tubes so digging can continue.
- Ensure that the surrounding areas are not damaged by the dig especially buried or underground utilities like gas pipes, sewage lines, plumbing, and many others.
- Employ experienced and highly trained experts to dig safely without putting themselves and others in danger as well as underground utilities as we understand that damage and accidents can be very costly.
Aside from following strict company safety guidelines, Pressure Works ensures that all government safety protocols are followed and legal requirements are met.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Footwear – safety footwear should be insulated wet weather boots and must be non-slip.
- Hearing protection – ear muffs or any protective covering should be worn to keep debris and dust from getting inside your ears and to minimise the noise.
- Clothing – use highly-visible clothing that is effective for both day and night use. This is to ensure that you are easily seen when the hydrovac and other heavy equipment is in full operation. You do not get into any accidents and when you do, you can be found right away.
- Head protection – Use construction helmets or hard hats at all times to ensure that your head is safe from any falling objects. Flying debris and other moving parts can hurt you if you are not careful.
- Eye protection – use safety glasses at all times. Avoid getting sand, gravel, stones, and debris from getting in your eyes.
- Face protection – face shields are a must.
- Hand protection – use gloves when working on the dig site.
- Protective clothing – use protective suits and water-resistant gear. Digging can be messy and wet.
- Breathing protection – respiratory protection can be half or full-face respirators.
At Pressure Works, we ensure that our PPE meets the relevant Australian safety standards.
Main Hazards Of Hydro-Vacuum Excavation
- Falls, trips, slips
- Electric shock (because water is involved and there are underground electrical lines)
- Vehicle accidents
- Pressure or vacuum related accidents
- Disturbance of the topsoil in the work area and surrounding areas.
- Disturbance of water tables
- Contamination of natural flora due to disposal and dumping methods
Before commencing any hydro excavation project, it is important to check the equipment and tools to make sure they are in good working condition. Inspect all PPEs and replace as needed.
Pressure Works has been delivering the highest quality excavation services in Melbourne. Let us help you dig safely and accurately.