Safety is essential when carrying out works any works that break ground.  The BYDA 5P’s to Safe Excavation covers the guidelines that need to be followed before breaking ground to protect workers and the wider community, as well as avoid damage to vital infrastructure.

The Five Ps of Safe Excavation – Plan, Prepare, Pothole, Protect, Proceed


Plan your job. Use the BYDA service at least one day before your job is due to begin, and ensure you have the correct plans and information required to carry out a safe project.


Prepare by communicating with asset owners if you need assistance. Look for clues onsite. Engage a Certified Locator.


Service locating to quality level A - potholing

Potholing is physically sighting the asset by hand digging or hydro vacuum extraction To pothole, if permitted using the asset owner’s stated method as specified on the asset owner’s plan and / or information pack.


Using all the information gathered from visual clues, professional service locating and potholing, take steps to protect underground assets – alter plans, adhere to individual utilities build over guidelines,

If potholing has occurred, protect the infrastructure by using various methods; such as communicating to all working on site, erecting barriers and / or marking the location of the exposed infrastructure. 


You should only proceed with your excavation work after you have planned, potholed (unless prohibited) and have protective measures in place.

The Before You Dig Australia service is free for anyone to use and is The Essential First Step when it comes to safe work practices. Stay safe and always follow the 5Ps of Safe Excavation – it starts with lodging a free enquiry online, anytime at

If you don’t have time or are unsure about the process, contact us at DWB Service Locating. We can keep you project and people safe by enacting the 5 P’s of Safe Excavation for you.