How to fit a basement dig through a 660mm alleyway

To dig out a basement underneath a flat near Bristol city centre, a local building contractors had to remove tonnes of spoil through a narrow alley – one of the smallest spaces they had ever had to work in.

The project in numbers

  • Site only accessible via a 20m long alley that narrows to 660mm
  • 2x  Easikit 300 modular conveyors : 12.1m and 10.9m
  • 220m3 of spoil to be excavated
The site was only accessible through a 20m long alleyway that narrowed to 660mmThe site was only accessible through a 20m long alleyway that narrowed to 660mm

The challenge

When a local building contractor was called in to add a floor underneath a flat near Bristol city centre, they faced an unusual challenge. The Contractor needed to remove tonnes of spoil but the site was only accessible through a 20m long alleyway that narrowed to 660mm. The team needed a solution that would get the job done quickly, effectively, and safely.

On a job like this, with tonnes of spoil to move, the team would normally use cranes, diggers, dumpers, and other  excavation equipment . Yet, with such a small space to work in, another solution needed to be found.

Initially, moving the material by hand was considered and priced up but the passageway was too narrow even for a wheelbarrow. Not to mention that the digging teams would almost certainly be exhausted.

From a health and safety point of view, this project was a minefield. Shifting all the soil, working in enclosed spaces, foot traffic impediment, repetitive motion, and lifting the barrows of bricks and soil into a skip would all increase the risk of injury to the labourers.

The solution

Coveya installed a tailored system of two  Easikit 300 modular conveyors so that the crew could move the spoil to the skip without leaving the basement site. This considerably reduced downtime.

Instead of six wheelbarrows and considerable manual lifting, tonnes of material were shovelled straight from the basement into the conveyor hopper. The two conveyors ran the entire length of the alleyway taking the material from the basement all the way to the skip. The second conveyor included an incline at the end, where it discharged the spoil straight into the skip. Coveya also installed a support system, allowing the conveyor to incline up and over the pavement, so foot traffic was not impeded at all.

The team saved many hours of work with this effective time- and labour-saving solution on a project that had been considered almost impossible at the start. Most importantly, using these conveyor belts enabled the Contractor to overcome key health and safety hazards he was worried about, and significantly reduced the risk of injury to his team.

Do you have a basement excavation project that could use a conveyor? Call us on 0800 915 9195 to discuss your project or to  arrange a free site survey .


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