All over Australia, there are millions of miles of underground utility lines and buried facilities. In fact, every day, more and more cables and structures are being laid beneath the ground, which means that underground services are becoming increasingly complex and vast. For this reason, underground service locating is an essential step in any construction project — the process helps to avoid unnecessary costs and damages, and makes excavation much safer and more efficient. That said, there are still a few misconceptions about underground service locating — read on to find out more about what the process involves, and what you may not know about this innovative practice…
If you have had a look at the utility map for your proposed excavation or drilling site and have noticed that there are no utilities reflected on the map, you might think that it is not necessary to do any underground services locating. This, however, is not the case. It is important to understand that many records and maps are outdated or incomplete. New utilities and cables may have been laid in more recent years, which is why it is so important that you take the necessary steps to check what is below the ground. This can save you considerable time and money, and make sure that your project is both safe and legal.
Once you have been through the underground service locating process, you may be tempted to use your results for all your future projects in the same area. The reality, however, is that there are a number of variables that can affect the outcome of your results, so if you plan to dig or drill in the future, it is worth checking for underground utilities again when your next project begins. This is because factors like soil conditions, seasonal changes and the scope of previous ground-intrusive work may all have an impact on the outcome of your project. Your new project may also require deeper excavation than before, or new information about underground services might be made available, which will need to considered before you excavate.
It is a common misconception that only metallic pipes and cables can be detected by means of underground service locating. The truth, in fact, is that various materials can be effectively detected. These include non-metallic utilities like PCV pipes, fibre optic cables and concrete pipes. In some cases, it is even possible to place a metallic trace wire into a hollow pipe or conduit in order to trace it with a cable or pipe locator system.
At Provac Australia, we are experts in detecting underground services. We use a selection of techniques and top-of-the-range technologies so that we can ensure precision. We are able to detect and locate buried cables, pipes, mains and other underground services and structures.
All of our team members are workplace training certified, and attend regular ongoing training programmes to make sure that we remain at the forefront of our field. As such, we are qualified to use several different methods — the best and most common way is with the use of electromagnetic radio waves. We also use ground penetrating radar (GPR) primarily for the location of non-conductive pipes like PVC water mains.
If you would like to find out more about our underground service locating process and what it involves, please have a look here.
We service the Gold Coast, Brisbane, Logan and other areas of South East Queensland. To get in touch for more information or to request a quote, please contact us here or give us a call on 1300 734 772.
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