Risk Assessment For Excavations

Working with excavators and excavations is a medium to high risk activity.

Areas that should be addressed and all information obtained should be used to during the planning and preparation for excavation work.

  • Ground conditions ( Have the conditions been checked, is the ground stable? is the ground waterlogged or prone to areas of running sand?
  • Underground structures or water courses ( Underground chambers and tank, underground streams?
  • The location of existing services ( The area MUST be fully checked for existing services, not only buried but above ground, is there a risk of the excavator arm/bucket striking overhead power lines or risk of arcing) Check the local authority drawings, use a cable avoidance tool, scan the ground with ground penetrating radar etc, use hand digging where required.
Run over or hit by excavatorSite Operatives and persons permitted within siteOnly Trained Persons are allowed to operate the equipment.Mirrors are fitted and checked before use.Banksman supervising at ALL times.Check All slew areas.

Bucket changes to be done away from excavations and with full banksman supervision

Ensure that excavator is checked before use, including all hydraulic hoses and pins for securing buckets. (Blue book) to be used.

Ensure buckets etc are not stored next to excavations.

Persons falling into excavations.Site Operatives and persons permitted within siteAll works supervised by banksman.All excavations are securely fenced off when works have stopped ( even for lunch breaks)
Collapse of excavationsSite OperativesUse of trench boxes, use of propriety ground support systems, and excavations stepped where possible.Excavated material stored away from excavation.
Unauthorized UseAll personsEnsure that equipment is fully locked and that metal door and window guards are used when equipment not used.