Rock Surveying: The Need to Know

Following the launch of Rock Surveying, a new dedicated Utility Mapping service, new team members Emma [Operations Co-ordinator], Ben [Senior Utility Surveyor] and Tony [Senior Topographical Surveyor] have provided an insight into their roles - and how Utilities Surveying can benefit Construction firms UK wide - with this latest staff Q&A:

Tell us about Rock Surveying – what are the key services it provides?

Rock surveying specialises in mapping above and below ground Utilities and features. We have a specialist focus in two areas the first being ground penetrating radar and the second being highly accurate mapping of substations – Emma.

What are the benefits of Utility Mapping?

Accurate Utility location maps allow clients to plan around existing below ground hazards, establishing safe and costs effective connection points, whilst saving time and money by improving decision making and allowing for pre-planning – Emma.

Explain the process of utility mapping. What does it involve?

Underground utility mapping is a process whereby you trace, identify and map the position of mains and domestic utilities including telecommunications, electricity, gas, water and drainage. Surveying techniques include electromagnetic locations, which involved inducing an electric current onto utilities and following the signal that it generates from above ground. The second is ground penetrating radar (GPR) most commonly seen on Time Team, this is a geophysical survey method that sends radar pulses into the ground and generates images from the returned signals – Ben.

What sectors will specifically benefit from accurate utility mapping?

Construction companies, Highways, Local Authorities and Distribution Network Operators [DNOs] are the main clients for surveying services – Emma.

How many team members do you have?

We currently have three Utility Surveyors and two Topographical Surveyors. We look forward to expanding our team as the service grows and develops – Emma.

Considering the success of Rock Power Connections, what are your long-term plans for Rock Surveying?

We would like to see Rock surveying grow its client base, growing our substation specialism, whilst establishing a profound reputation for quality – Emma.

What made you chose surveying as a career path?

I took on the role as a Trainee Utility Surveyor as I was advised by the fire service to get some "life experience" prior to joining and have never left! Now as Lead Surveyor, I enjoy co-ordinating teams, travelling all over the UK to attend different sites and meet different people, whilst doing the best job I can to support development for communities – Ben.

I chose Surveying because I wanted a career where no two days are the same, working both indoors and outdoors – this combined with an inspirational talk from a Topographical Surveyor, who attended a College Careers Day - Tony

I imagine surveying can be a challenging career with life very much spend on the road. How do you and your colleagues deal with this?

Life on the road and away from home isn't easy although escaping a five-year-old, a two-year-old and "the wife" plus numerous DIY tasks is a godsend! The banter in the team, good food on the go and tackling challenging sites for grateful clients is worth it – Ben.

I think most of us would be thinking of the bills (joking). Actually, I thoroughly enjoy working outdoors during the summer months and also enjoy the fact we get to visit places we would never would have if not for the job – Tony.

What is a typical day for you?

A typical day could be: If we are undertaking a Topographical and Utilities job, I would start by liaising with the utilities team about the best approach, understanding which sections to finish off first, whilst respecting the survey area. If I’m working alone on a Topographical survey, I always complete a site walk-around first to confirm start off points and approach, ensuring I finish the job on time. Part of this will include a decision on which kit to use, based on various factors such as time allowed on site and client requirements. We always ensure we maximise daylight to create detailed surveys, reporting on as many points as possible. – Tony

To find out more about Rock Surveying, please visit our dedicated web page here. Alternatively, to speak to a member of our team, please call 01905 456 384.

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