Finding Bones at an Excavation Site in Tacoma; What Do You Do?

excavation site bonesYou never know what lies beneath the floor you’re digging. You may have heard tales of construction crews that found mummified remains or ancient fossils. What actions should you take regarding excavation site bones?

What to Do with Excavation Site Bones in Tacoma

Digging rocky soil using an excavator is par for the course for contractors. 99% of the time, the exhumed earth is nothing but mounds of dirt, soil, and pebbles. However, it’s not unheard of for crew members to discover skeletal remains. What do you do? Do you just resume work and keep digging?

Halt all Activity

Stop all construction work right away. Washington law requires construction workers to halt all activity upon finding bones. Don’t disturb the remains or try to dig them out if they're still partially buried.

Report the Findings

Notify the client/landowner. Can you identify the nature of the bones? Is it human or animal? If the former, then you contact law enforcement or the local coroner's office. The site may be a crime scene. If it's animal remains, then contact the local university or state geological office. The bones may simply be a buried pet from a prior property owner. On the other hand, the bones may be of anthropological significance and warrant analysis from an expert.

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Spoil-Pile Placement and Safety in Renton

spoil pileCave-ins are among the greatest risks and major causes of accidents in a construction zone. Your spoil-pile can be a contributor to haphazard incidents. Are you setting the pile at an appropriate distance from the excavation site?

Spoil-Pile in Renton Explained

'Spoil-pile' is a ubiquitous term that refers to a deposit of excavated solid matter. Often, this includes dirt, soil, and crushed concrete. The pile itself isn't a particularly big risk. However, when you deposit the pile adjacent to the trench, that's when it becomes a hazard. The weight of the spoil can cause the trench to cave in. The higher the pile the greater the risk of inducing an avalanche. Continue Reading â†'

Excavator Safety Checklist—Safety Protocols Before Commencing a Construction Project in Everett

excavator safety checklistSafety practices must be enforced before using heavy machinery--no exceptions! Besides following OSHA guidelines and having a safety guide, you also need to service your construction vehicles and tools. To ensure optimal operating conditions and prevent bodily injury, don’t use any machinery without following an excavator safety checklist.

Pre-Operation Excavator Safety Checklist in Everett

  • Inspect the construction zone to be certain you have ample moving space for the excavator. The needed space will differ depending on whether you're operating a conventional or zero swing excavator.
  • Confirm the locking pins and safety clip are in place before turning on the excavator.
  • Test the boom arm and the breaker and hoe pack. Check for greater-than-normal movement in the arm. Keep your ears open for irregular grinding sounds.
  • Inspect the suspension for wear in the rollers, idler wheels, track links, and sprockets.
  • Open the engine bay and pull out the dipstick to check the oil. Do this for every four hours of excavator use.

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Excavator Attachments at a Glance in Granite Falls (Part 2)

excavator attachmentsIf you haven't already done so, please read December’s post for part one’s list of excavator attachments. This is part two, which discusses other types of attachments. With part one and part two, you’ll have a comprehensive list of the attachments for your reference.

Common Excavator Attachments in Granite Falls

Plate Compactor: This attachment does precisely what the name implies. Plate compactors compact the soil, minimizing the need to compact by hand. The use of shock mounts spreads the force evenly, even when compacting on sloped land.

Rippers: A ripper tears through rough, compact, and iced-over surfaces. It does this with immense ripping and rugged power not possible from manual human labor. Operators rely on a ripper attachment to loosen the ground before transporting the debris away using a bucket attachment.

Trenchers: A trencher attachment is capable of creating trenches in even the toughest and rock-heavy soils. Multiple chain and teeth selections are available for handling various surface conditions. Trenchers are the tool of choice for rock scaping, irrigation, and utility-based construction work. Continue Reading â†'

Excavator Attachments at a Glance in Sammamish (Part 1)

excavator attachmentsYou can't finish an entire construction project using just a single attachment. In prior posts, we’ve discussed the various types of excavators and how these heavy-duty vehicles work. This time, we want to discuss the multiple excavator attachments and their respective uses. Due to the numerous attachments, this post will be separated into two parts.

Five Common Excavator Attachments

Breaker: The breaker and hoe pack use a sharp or blunt drill to split apart huge concrete or stone slabs. Contractors require breaker attachments for interior and flatwork demolition, as well as for some road repairs.

Bucket: Most laypeople are familiar with this attachment. This is the enlarged scoop with "teeth" at the end. Operators use the bucket to remove huge piles of debris, ranging from dirt to demolished brick and masonry.

Augers: Augers use torque power to drill holes into rocky soil. It’s capable of penetrating clay, ice, and shale. Augers are perfect for producing steep holes for planting trees or installing large posts and poles. Continue Reading â†'

Holiday Construction Operations in Woodinville? An Important Question

Holiday Business OperationsAs an independent contractor, you decide the hours of operation for your business. With Christmas quickly approaching, this leads to the question: should you engage in holiday construction operations?

Considerations for Holiday Construction Operations

Some businesses operate within one or two days of major holidays. Others even choose to work under limited hours on holidays to speed up the completion of time-sensitive projects. By holidays, we don’t just mean major ones like Thanksgiving and Christmas. We're also talking about other pertinent events throughout the year, such as Memorial Day, Labor Day, President's Day, Martin Luther King Day, etc. Continue Reading â†'

Excavators 101: General Information for New Contractors in Stanwood

excavatorsAll starting contractors eventually take on their first major construction project. Newcomers in the industry may not be totally familiar with some of the machinery they'll be using. Having a baseline knowledge of excavator general information is important for safely operating and handling the machine.

Parts of an Excavator

Excavators make up of these following components: House, bucket, stick, and boom.

  • House--this is the part that holds the engine, oil, and fuel.
  • Bucket--the attachment consisting of an enlarged scoop for digging and shuttling away debris. The bucket may be switched out with the breaker and hoe pack for breaking apart rockeries and concrete.
  • Stick--the elongated component that lifts the bucket.
  • Boom--the "neck" that connects the stick to the main excavator body

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Four Free 3D Modeling Software Solutions for Contractors Around Burlington

3D modeling softwareBefore partaking in the actual demolition and excavation of a site, contractors need to map a digital blueprint of what they plan to build. Traditionally, this was done using hand-drawn sketches. Nowadays, contractors have access to state-of-the-art construction software programs. We'll take a look at the top four free 3D modeling software for contractors.

Best 3D Modeling Software for Construction Projects

1. 3D Crafter

3D Crafter utilizes an easy-to-use drag-and-drop system for creating various 3D models and sculptures. This is a prime choice for developing images ranging from low-polygon models to more detailed 3D renderings. Developing 3D models also enables contractors to determine the equipment and type of excavators or breakers they will need for the impending project. Continue Reading â†'

How to Prevent an OSHA Audit in Bellingham

OSHA auditOsha audits can appear without announcement. If your construction business isn't up to local code, you can expect a heavy fine. How can you prevent a Department of Labor auditor from showing up and disrupting business operations? We'll explain why an OSHA audit occurs and how you can reduce the odds of an out-of-nowhere inspection.

Why OSHA Audits Occur

The Department of Labor consists of two divisions: OSHA and the Wages and Hour Division (WHD). OSHA oversees federal safety compliance guidelines. OSHA audits may be random or a response to an employee or client report of a probable safety violation. The average fine for a first-time offense is $12,000. Repeated violations can exceed that amount.

WHD, as you can probably guess, oversees worker salary to ensure employers are following salary and overtime pay requirements. Continue Reading â†'

Noise Control Methods for the Construction Industry in Monroe

Noise Control in ConstructionConstruction sites aren't exactly an area for peace and quiet. While loud noise is unavoidable, you can keep it within a reasonable volume. Here are a few construction noise control measures to keep in mind. This keeps complaints on the low end while also protecting crew members from future hearing loss.

Why Construction Noise Control Matters

Prolonged exposure to noise above 90 dBA can cause hearing loss. If you have to shout to talk to someone at an arm's length distance, then noise levels are dangerously high.

Use a decibel meter to determine the noise volume. Set up noise perimeter zones where the volume exceeds 90 dBA. You should designate all hard-hat areas as noise perimeter zones. Only staff working at the moment should be inside this area, and hearing protection should be mandatory. Continue Reading â†'