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Damage to assets can occur from any type of work that causes changes to the ground including:

  • Building work, earthworks and alteration of surfaces

  • Movement of heavy vehicles

  • Work causing excessive vibrations

  • Dewatering

  • Open and trenchless excavations

  • Installing ground anchors, buried and overhead services

  • Planting and removing trees

Our assets also present a risk to your work. They can fail for reasons unrelated to third party works. This includes ageing, corrosion or mechanical failures, which can have hazardous impacts.

With careful planning, damage can be avoided. The steps below outline the process for safely working near our assets.

  • Submit a Before You Dig Australia enquiry to determine the approximate location of our assets
  • Perform a site inspection to identify any surface indicators of underground assets

  • Conduct a damage risk assessment to determine whether your work presents a risk of damage
  • Consider what options are available to reduce the risks to allow the work to be carried out safely

At this stage you may be required to confirm the exact depth and location of assets near your work using potholing.

  • Develop your work plans and safe work methods referencing our guidelines
  • Work near our assets must meet our technical requirements

Request approval from us if your proposed work is in, on, over, under or within the prescribed proximities to our assets.

We will be in contact within 5 days of receipt of your application – please allow up to 28 days for us to review your application and either:

  • approve
  • approve with conditions*
  • request you make changes if the application is not acceptable

*a condition may include preparing a detailed design for asset relocation or protection works – where this is required you should arrange your schedule to allow for Water Corporation reviews and consultations. Please note: this process can take several months. An indication of the time to allow will be provided to you by one of our representatives once you've submitted your application.

  • Once your application has been approved, proceed with your work
  • Conduct a site meeting with one of our representatives at project start-up and before project close out
  • Allow for any work that needs to be performed by us as asset inspections, isolations and connections. Note that costs may be incurred – an indication of the associated costs will be provided to you by one of our representatives once you've submitted your application
  • You must have work plans, Before You Dig Australia information, work clearances and any other related information on site at all times

Undertake project close out – this includes providing us with all documents required for final acceptance including as-constructed drawings.

Penalties for unauthorised works

Any work on Water Corporation assets must be authorised and follow the Clearance To Work (CTW) process.
Unauthorised work can lead to a range of supply, quality and safety issues. Penalties for undertaking unauthorised work on Water Corporation assets may be imposed pursuant to Section 119 of the Water Services Act 2012.
If you’re unsure, please call us on 13 13 95.


More information

Use our Working near Water Corporation assets planning checklist and refer to our technical guidelines for more information about safely working near our assets.