How Calling a Contractor Changed My LifeHow Calling a Contractor Changed My Life

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How Calling a Contractor Changed My Life

This might sound completely crazy, but the most important call I ever may was to a construction contractor. I can remember the day as if it were yesterday. I had decided to rebuild parts of my home. This involved removing part of the roof, knocking down a brick wall and removing some electrical wires and water pipes. I started out just fine but then I started to have problems. I realised I was in out of my depth and decided to call an expert. The contractor who came around was great and he quickly fixed up the mess I had made. Since that day, I have had a keen interested in construction contractors. I hope you like this blog.

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3 Requirements a Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS) Must Meet for a Safe Excavation

The  Australian Excavation Work Code of Practice identifies a high-risk construction work about excavation as any excavation near a trench or shaft deeper than 1.5 meters or a tunnel. For any excavation (and other construction work) that is to be carried out under these conditions, preparation of a Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS) is mandatory before any work begins. Here are some of the requirements that a well-rounded SWMS must meet for a planned excavation to gain the necessary authorisation.

Accurately Identify Construction Work with High Risk

In the event you need to prepare a SWMS, it is mandatory that it clearly and exhaustively identifies the nature of the high-risk construction work. You, therefore, must have a clear understanding of the code and technical aspects of the pending excavation. Engaging a professional to aid in conducting a thorough risk assessment is vital in creating a compliant SWMS. Every hazard that the risk assessment uncovers relating to the work requires specific description. The health and safety risks emanating from the identified hazards also need to be accurately described and categorised.  

  Articulate the Necessary Control Measures

The SWMS must explicitly point to every control measure that is to be put in place. Every measure must be in response to a hazard identified in the first step. The SWMS must state how each proposal will be implemented and who will be responsible for the implementation. It must also provide a framework for monitoring and review of each control measure for effectiveness.

Demonstrate Inclusion

When preparing a SWMS, it is necessary to demonstrate the steps taken to include all stakeholders in the process. These include the owners of underground assets, the workers and their representatives, excavation contractors etc. The purpose of this requirement is to ensure that all matters and circumstances that affect the work to be done and those who will carry it out are accounted for. In conjunction with inclusion, the SWMS should factor in the Work Health and Safety Management Plan devised for the workplace if excavation is part of a construction project. 


Excavation work can involve hazards that pose grave risks to the workers and the public at large. The government through the Excavation Work Code of Practice lays down a framework through which these risks can be identified, assessed and adequate countermeasures put in place. A Safe Works Methods Statement is the document through which risk compliance is articulated for all stakeholders to be aware.