Make Safety A Priority When Working On A Trenching Project

Posted on: 22 March 2016

Trenching is an important job to have done during the building of a house, but if you're working on a house addition, building a shed or garage or even handling a landscaping job, you might find yourself in need of trenching. While it's always best to hire a trenching service for a large-scale project, you can often tackle smaller jobs on your own by renting a walk-behind trencher. The heavy-duty nature of the machine and the sharp blade means that it's integral to make safety a priority; before you even start the machine, make sure that you focus on safety in these areas.

Know What's Buried Beneath You

When you're preparing for a trenching job, you'll customarily use neon spray paint to mark your planned trenching route in the grass. This isn't the only paint that should appear on your lawn; you need to be sure to call your local building department to have a technician visit your property and mark with paint the location of any sewage pipes, natural gas pipes or power lines that could be buried in your yard. Once he or she has done so, you can note the location of these buried elements and make sure that your trenching job doesn't interfere with them. If so, you'll need to make alternate plans.

Ensure That You Understand The Type Of Soil

Several characteristics related to the soil, including its compaction and overall makeup, influence the approach that you should take when operating the trencher. As such, it's beneficial to call your local building authority and ask about having the soil tested. The building authority might have testers on staff or could refer you to a different organization; either way, a tester will visit your home and take soil samples in the area that you intend to trench. The results will indicate what style of cutting blade you should use on the trencher, as well as alert you to any potential safety issues, such as abnormally loose soil that could cave in during the trenching job.

Buy Or Rent The Proper Personal Safety Gear

Because trenching isn't a job that you should take lightly, it's important to have all the right apparel that will keep you safe. Steel-toed boots, durable gloves and long, thick clothing are all integral, but don't forget about hearing protection and protection for your eyes. Ensure that any neighbors or family members who are helping you with the trenching project take the same safety-first approach. Contact a business, such as Lancaster Trenching Inc, for more information. 

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