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#1 Posted : 20 August 2001 10:59:00(UTC)
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Posted By shaun mckeever
I wonder if anyone can help me. I am a fire officer and I have just recently been informed that there is a deep (40m) excavation on my patch with tunnelling works soon to start. I believe in the short 30-minute visit I had to the site that all safety precautions that the tunnelling company should have put in place are in place, however, since this is not my field can anyone advise me. The deepest part of the tunnelling will be 4.5km to the face. Detectors, breathing apparatus, emergency lighting are just some of the safety precautions in place.
Many thanks, Shaun McKeever
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#2 Posted : 20 August 2001 20:54:00(UTC)
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Posted By Peter J Harvey
www.hsebooks.co.uk will get you to the HSE books site and a search under tunnels will give you some pointers. I seem to remember a very interesting publication on the Channel Tunnel and safety precautions!!

You never know what might help.
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#3 Posted : 23 August 2001 20:40:00(UTC)
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Posted By Stuart Nagle
Shaun.

I fully understand your concerns in respect of this.

Was there any liaison between the fire and rescue services and the contractor/client at the planning stages ?

The obvious problem, as you may have summised already, will be rescue in the event of an incident. Getting up the tunnel will be a problem in a bad atmosphere to say the least. Did you hear about the incident on the London Water Ring Main ?

You obviously do not want to get into the situation where rescue is almost impossible in an adverse/low oxygen atmosphere, where BA is almost impossible to use due the length of tunnel heading etc to be traversed meaning that BA duration is a problem.

Consideration needs to be given, in liaison with the contractor, to there being suitable and sufficient equipment, for example air line BA and suitable escape sets provided, on site, to assist in effecting the self rescue/rescue and protection of the rescuers.

I also refer you to the Confined Spaces Regulations 1997, Regulation 5 and subsections, which require the 'employer' (the contractor in this case) to have an emergency plan in place which not only safeguards his employees, but 'so far as is reasonably practicable' protects the rescuers. If you indulge yourself in the ACoP and Guidance within the CS regs, you will also see there is a need for equipment to be supplied by the employer to assist, where applicable, the rescue of persons.

This is a starter for you.

What does your operational procedure for CS rescue say. I suspect it may be out of date and require review if not amended in light of the CS regs 97.

If I can be of further assistance, please contact me.

best regards...

Stuart Nagle
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