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Insurance for digging a trench to put a hedge in

I need to dig a trench roughly 20m long 50cm wide and 50cm deep along my boundary to plant a hedge row.
I'll be using a digger but I've no idea where the utilities are, can I get insurance so that if I damage either my or my neighbour's services that I'm covered for the cost?
Any advice is appreciated.
Thanks
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Posts

  • RoddersUKRoddersUK Swanwick - SouthamptonPosts: 257
    Won't house insurance cover that, if you have accidental damage. Might be worth reading your policy.
  • robairdmacraignilrobairdmacraignil CorkPosts: 452
    I think hedge plants settle in better when there is less soil disturbance and small holes for each plant are dug out rather than a big trench with a much greater amount of soil turned upside down. The soil life that helps plants live is to some extent adapted to live closer or further from the surface so a trench will be much more disruptive and lead to poorer soil conditions just when the young hedge plants need help to settle in my opinion.
  • philippasmith2philippasmith2 Posts: 841
    Surely the first thing to check before you start any work involving machinery isto ascertain where the services run ?  Your local council/utility companies should be able to help if your house deeds don't make it clear enough.
  • GilesClaphamGilesClapham Posts: 3
    edited 7 July
    Thanks all, LineSearchBeforeYouDig is perhaps the most useless web site I've come across, all it tells me is that the major services are not registered with them.
    Would a CAT and Genny be a more effective way of locating the services or are they a miss and hit?
  • Chris-P-BaconChris-P-Bacon Posts: 413
    You'll need service drawings (gas, electric, water and telecoms) and CAT and Genny (and know how to use them) these will also pick up unrecorded or redundant services. Service drawings will also show if gas or electric in particular has a minimum stand off distance. 
    Most services are in the top 1.20m so hand digging is preferable. Also look out for tell tale signs of services as you dig..sand, warning bunting etc and have look for stop cock covers and manholes/Telecom covers.
    Take care..don't take risks.
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 8,225
    Having worked in Street lighting where operatives are trained in the use of CAT and Genny, l can tell you that they are not foolproof. The drawings may not be entirely accurate, and there are all sorts of factors that can come into play which can lead to accidents. 
    I would strongly advise you to dig by hand if you can, l know it's a hell of a long run, but it would be far less risky. I 
    Are you planting bare root plants ?
  • WilderbeastWilderbeast East YorkshirePosts: 1,218
    Small builder here, the so called plans mean next to nothing and just show a general indication that services pass over a boundary at some point (no rules stating they must be accurate). The detector machines are notoriously unreliable. We dig by hand till we find services then bring a machine in after
  • Chris-P-BaconChris-P-Bacon Posts: 413
    Small builder here, the so called plans mean next to nothing and just show a general indication that services pass over a boundary at some point (no rules stating they must be accurate). The detector machines are notoriously unreliable. We dig by hand till we find services then bring a machine in after
    Hmm..I've found , on the whole,  service drawings to be reasonably accurate (used to obtain from Envirocheck) ..a few duffers I'll grant you - especially some of the older ones. 
    I also got sent on a CAT & Genny course on yearly basis which were well worth it. It was surprising how many thought they knew how to use them but didn't.  
    If in doubt tho..don't dig.
  • Thanks for everyone's input, I forked out for some service plans and dug out very carefully, it was clear (as expected) but better to be safe that sorry.
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