Whether you're a homeowner wanting to replace a fence, a contractor installing a new cable or pipe along a street, or working on a roading or footpath project you should check the location of underground services. This will ensure you avoid damage to underground power, water, gas and telecommunication services while also ensuring the safety of the people working on your project.
Requesting a cable location
To request a cable location, complete the ‘request a cable location’ form on the WEL website — you must provide your beforeUdig sequence number and preferred cable location date. We need a minimum of ten working days’ notice and we will endeavour to respond to your preferred date, where possible. If charges apply, we will ask you to agree to pay the charges, prior to continuing.
Accuracy of the surface markings
Once our cables in your selected dig site are located by one of our cable locators, their approximate position is marked with orange paint. While reasonable measures will be taken to ensure the accuracy of the surface markings provided by our cable location team, they are indicative only. Markings may be incomplete and errors and omissions may exist. We therefore recommend that hand digging continues until all of the cables have been found. Sections 25 - 28 and appendices A1.3 - A1.5 of the WorkSafe Guide for Safety with Underground Services publication explains some of the limitations of cable location devices. Inaccurate, incomplete or erroneous surface markings do not relieve the personnel responsible for the excavation from carrying out all other precautions that are necessary to avoid injury and damage.
Durability of surface markings
We use an industry standard spray paint but we recommend photographing the surface markings for reference prior to starting work. You may also want to refresh the surface markings yourself with orange spray paint where necessary and you may also want to use wooden pegs in grassed or unsurfaced areas.
Depth of cables
Cables should be expected to be found at any depth. We therefore recommend that hand digging continues until all of the cables have been found.
Locating cables yourself
In accordance with the WorkSafe Guide for Safety with Underground Services publication, frequent and repeated use should be made of locators during the course of the work.