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Webb Plumbing - Depths compliance

Depths compliance

When Webb Plumbing Services excavate to replace drains where the depth is greater than 1.5 m deep we always carry out a comprehensive risk assessment. Subject to our findings we may:

  • Batter the walls of the trench (i.e. dig a wide trench which is stepped so as to prevent cave-ins)
  • Set up ground support systems. I.e. shoring of the trench (steel, aluminium or timber supports).


When working with depths, site inspection is crucial. We take steps to understand:

  • The type of soil, whether the ground is wet or has been excavated in the past
  • If there are there any services in the area (i.e. gas, electricity, Telstra)
  • Are there foundations, trees or other structures nearby?
  • Could the ground be contaminated with trade waste?
  • Could vehicles or pedestrians be at risk from excavations?

Our team is trained to carry out extensive excavation checklists, including:

  • Filling out a SWMS (complete with rescue plan) as standard practice when working with depths
  • Checking shoring daily
  • Barricading all excavations/ excavator
  • Ensuring nobody can enter an un-shored or un-battered section of trench
  • Ensuring spoil must be more than half a metre from the edge of a trench
  • Setting up safe ladder access
  • Ensuring two Webb Plumbing Services staff attend each job
  • Comprehensively checking excavator and drainage system fumes
  • Full safety check on excavator controls


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