Having been in the business for a long time now, we have seen quite a few construction sites… both before construction commences and after the home is complete. We understand that intricacies of a construction site and the process involved in scheduling a construction build.
With this in mind, we have expanded our hire offerings and now provide not only temporary fence hire, but silt fence and site toilet hire as well!
And just so you’re completely clear on all things silt fence and toilet hire, we’ve put together a handy outline going over all the details.
What is Silt Fence
Silt fence, also known as sediment control or sediment barriers is mesh fencing installed partly buried into the ground to contain loose soil, material and sediment within the site. Silt fence is absolutely necessary on your construction site to keep sediment from spilling out onto other sites and/or the road.
Like temporary fencing, silt fencing is relatively straight forward in both its construction and installation. It’s basically made up of two components… Geotextile fabric and support posts, which are typically made of timber or steel.
Another alternative to preventing sediment escaping from your site is coir logs. Coir logs are made of densely packed organic coir/coconut fibre which is then wrapped in netting. They are not only strong and durable but they are completely biodegradable. When laid out in the correct location and adequately fixed into place, the coir logs prove to be an excellent barrier to sediment and soil erosion.
Coir logs can be bent and shaped to fit the natural contours of your site and can also be stacked to create a wall of protection.
Why You Need Silt Fence on Your Construction Site
Yourhome.gov.au outlines some clear reasons why there is a need for sediment and erosion control on all construction sites. These reasons include:
- Preventing pollution to our waterways, which may kill aquatic life
- Prevents the blockage of drain pipes
- Reduces clean-up costs. On the spot fines can occur in NSW for anyone not adequately preventing sediment from leaving a construction site.
- Helps to stabilise your construction site
- Improves site conditions, especially in wet weather
- Reduces loss from material stockpiles
Not putting sediment control or silt fence in place can cause serious damage to our waterways and can be costly for you the builder. You could face losing valuable material from your site due to erosion or a fine for not containing soil, sand, cement, gravel and other loose materials within your site.
If you have a particularly sandy or soft soil site, your site has a moderate to significant slope or you are building during a season that brings a lot of rain, then it’s imperative that you have silt fencing installed.
Where to Install the Silt Fence on Your Site
If your silt fence is not installed correctly on your construction site you might as well not have installed it at all.
Silt fencing needs to be installed in the location where it is most likely water will run. This is usually in the lowest part of your site. Best practices advise that you follow the natural contours of your site as much as possible to get the maximum benefits of your silt fence.
Sediment control can be addressed with one single barrier or several barriers can be put in place to prevent erosion. As all sites and locations are different, your sediment control will need to be assessed on a site by site basis.
How to Install the Silt Fence
Just like the location, if you are not installing your silt fence correctly, then there is no point in installing it at all.
The geotextile fabric of the silt fence needs to be laid in a 150mm trench and backfilled to ensure no material can make its way underneath the fence. The upright supports also need to be no more than 3 meters apart to maintain stability.
This illustration taken from the environment.nsw.gov.au Guidelines for Erosion & Sediment Control on Building Sites gives a good indication of how to correctly install silt fencing.
And like all onsite equipment, your silt fence needs to be checked and maintained throughout the build time to ensure it stays in good condition and continues to do its job of keeping soil and material on your site and not washed away down the nearest drain.
Other Important Information about Sediment Control
To help minimise erosion on your construction site, there are a few other preventative measures you can take. These include:
- Avoiding excessing cut and fill on your site. Try to use the natural contours of the site as much as possible.
- Keep existing vegetation on-site and/or install new (or even temporary) vegetation to prevent soil erosion.
- Stabilise your entry and exit points with gravel crossovers to prevent soil and materials being tracked off-site along with your vehicles.
- Redirect stormwater around your site if possible
- Manage the loose material on-site effectively so you don’t have excessive amounts of material waiting a long time to be used.
- Keep your site tidy and organised. Remove any loose material that is no longer needed as soon as possible
- Keep on top of your sediment control. Maintain your silt fence and site conditions on a daily or weekly basis.
Remember! As the builder / developer of the site, you have a legal obligation to take all steps necessary to prevent sediment and soil erosion from your construction site.
Download your copy of the environment.nsw.gov.au Guidelines for Erosion & Sediment Control on Building Sites for a more detailed understanding of all things sediment and erosion.
What About Site Toilets
Site toilet, Portaloo, Builder’s Dunny… No matter what you call it, having one available on your construction site is a legal requirement under the Work Health and Safety Act (WHS Act).
Site toilets, need to be delivered to site before your construction commences and they need to be fully functioning and operational throughout the build timeline.
The most common site toilets are the chemical flush toilets or basic straight chemical drop toilets and these are serviced on a regular basis (generally fortnightly).
There is not much more to add about site toilets other than letting you know we can arrange for delivery and servicing of your site toilets along with your silt fence and temporary construction fence.
Seriously, why call multiple people to organise the supply and delivery of multiple items to the same site when one call can get you all the components you need to set your site up ready for construction.
Temporary fence… Silt fence… Site toilet. One call and it’s all organised. Simple. Seamless. Smart!
Give our guys a call at your nearest location and we can get your site booked in today.
Newcastle: (02) 4956 9060 | Central Coast: (02) 4311 9133 | Sydney: (02) 8332 1640 | Wollongong: (02) 4225 0176