If you are thinking of commencing a digging project in your back yard, you need to think carefully about what might be under the ground. Pipes and cables are not necessarily as far down as you might think. If you unexpectedly hit a cable or pipe your project could be seriously delayed, and a lot more costly than you expected.
The aim of this article is to talk about what types of pipe and cable you might encounter while digging in your back yard, and what the consequences could be. We are also going to look at ways you can avoid coming into contact with pipes and cables in the first place.
Types of pipe and cable that could be an obstacle
There are several different types of pipe and cable that run under the ground, including:
- Water pipes
- Sewer pipes
- Electricity cables
- Gas mains
If you do not know what is under the ground in your yard you could come into contact with any of these pipes and cables.
If you hit a water pipe while you are digging, you could end up flooding your yard, and potentially your neighbor’s property; this would be an expensive mistake to make. Hitting a sewer pipe could be even worse as the flooding would consist of contaminated water. If you hit an electricity cable you could be electrocuted which could end up being fatal. Hitting a gas main could also be fatal if an explosion resulted. The best thing to do if you do hit a gas main is to get away from the area before you call the provider’s emergency number. Never use a cell phone when you are close to a gas escape.
As you can see, the consequences of hitting a cable or pipe can be very serious. So how can you go about avoiding the problem?
How to avoid hidden pipes and cables
There is no way of you seeing through the earth without help. If you want to know if there are any cables or pipes under your property, so you can avoid them, you can have utility location carried out. This involves the use of specialized equipment which can present a view of any structures that are hidden underground. Once you know what lies beneath your yard, you can make plans accordingly.
You may also want to consider using vacuum excavation to complete your project. This is a non-invasive process, so there is less likelihood of damage being caused.
It’s never a good idea to just go ahead with a building project in your yard, without knowing what obstacles you may be facing. If you do so, you could end up putting yourself and your family in danger. You could also end up spending a lot of money repairing the damage. It’s worth investing a little more money in the project up front, to make sure it’s completed successfully.