Industry Best Practices for Vacuum Excavation
There are many methods of excavation that are employed in digging. Though most of the methods used today are modern, others are traditional. The process of digging has improved in ease of digging, speed and safety due to the fact that drilling companies are using these new methods. An example is the vacuum excavation method that uses either water or air in the process. By noting the following practices, you are assured of an efficient excavation.
There are some soils that are hard-packed and heavy, where air cannot penetrate well. In such cases, hydro excavation, or the use of water is most preferred. There are areas where the dig site might have loose soil, with a lot of sand and gravel, and in such places, dry or air excavation would be a wise choice. Safety wise, dry excavation is the better alternative because it will not damage older pipes and brittle electricity wires because it has no water pressure like in hydro excavation.
With regard to the size of the vacuuming pumps to be used, it is important to take into account the sizes of the trucks to be used in the excavation. If the required vacuum power is to be sufficient enough, then the size of the air or water tank must match the size of the pump used. This implies that if you require a lot of vacuum power, both the tank used and the pump should be large. In cases where both dry and wet excavation are to be done, then larger than usual tanks are going to be needed.
However much vacuuming, whether dry or wet, is considered to be safe than old fashioned digging methods, safety issues must be addressed. Training on safety measures while handling machines should be put into place. There are modern machines that require specialized training before they are used. All their operators must be shown how to use them safely. Due to the presence of underground utility pipes and power lines, the operators of the machinery should be careful. Proper gear and clothing is a necessity for workers. Hand gloves and dielectric boots are part of the gear needed.
Digging by using the vacuuming technique is a precise process. Unfortunately, sometimes thing can go wrong during the exercise. This can be caused by mistakenly digging in the wrong site due to wrong identification process or human error. Such mistakes can cause interference with electric lines and gas pipes leading to gas explosions or electrocution. It is vital that the necessary authorities are contacted to confirm if the intended digging location is the correct one, and provide accurate maps.
The vacuum trucks and the pumps that the drilling company uses to dig should be well maintained. This will ensure the machines will perform to desired expectation. Considering that tear and wear is normal, the machines should occasionally be checked. Regularly lubricate the machines, placing emphasis on the moving parts. Parts like nozzles and hoses need regular examination. These practices will ensure efficient vacuum excavation.