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Stage 1 subdivision (utilities)

Project Location: Brigadoon, WA Client: RJ Vincent
Value: $2m>$5m Project Timeline: 2010/11
Lost Time Injury Frequency Rate (LTIFR): 0% Medical Treatment Injury Frequency Rate (MTIFR):0%

Project Overview

RJ Vincent were appointed as the main contractor for this prestigious Perth subdivision and subsequently appointed Reilly Contractors as a sub contractor to undertake water reticulation, power and Telstra.

The project required the use of a trencher and rock breakers to excavate approximately 10km of trenching for water and power on their required alignments. The Reilly team had previous experience in this Perth locality, therefore had no hesitation in utilising a large rock trencher to assist with the main line trench excavation. Road crossing and required run-ins would be excavated with 30T Excavators and rock breakers.

From the outset we were aware that the rock excavation was to be a major part of the project and would prove a real challenge. This would necessitate the use of specialist equipment, therefore PIHA Pty Ltd were appointed to assist with the trench excavation, utilising their Vermeer T1055 rock trencher with 900mm chain. Having worked with PIHA on previous projects we knew they had significant experience and capability in terms of trenching. We sincerely acknowledge PIHA, in particular Kevin ‘Bear’ Brown and their efforts to help ensure the success of the project. (

Although our team had experience of rock, this was indeed one of the hardest varieties to encounter and proved an obstacle to overcome, as it initially impacted anticipated daily production time. To maintain the program timeframe and reduce lost time we mobilised additional excavators to operate on other areas of the site whilst the trencher concentrated on the main runs.

We also encountered granite that could not be excavated using the rock breakers or the trencher, leaving us with ‘drill and blast’ as the only option. These works were undertaken by ‘Darling Earth’ who, thankfully, were successful in removing granite from the trench, allowing for the project to progress.

Traditional backfill methods utilising a loader were inappropriate on the works due the grade of slopes. Safety was paramount therefore sand distribution to the trenches was undertaken with excavators and kibbles.

Due to the project locality, a further risk and concern were bush fires. As we were undertaking activities in the height of the summer, this risk had been discussed in the pre- start of the project. Although our worksite was not directly impacted by fires we did evacuate our staff on one occasion, when a fire was identified in the surrounding area. Fire evacuation and muster points previously appointed by RJ Vincent were put to good use and the site was cleared without delay to ensure worker safety.

Considering the obstacles we encountered as part of the project we were both delighted and proud of our achievements. The project completed on time with no incidents, LTI (lost time injuries) or MTI (medical treatment injuries).

In summary Reilly Contractors Managing Director, Mike Reilly would like to pay special thanks to all those involved in bringing to fruition a successful project. The team involved, from the consultant to the on site worker whose job it was to follow the trencher were a pleasure to work with! We look forward to contributing to the forthcoming stages of this development. 

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