Cable avoidance tools are a requirement for use when utility companies are planning to carry out any groundwork that requires an area to be excavated.
The cable avoidance tool (CAT) is used to detect buried live power cables by locating the electrical frequency that these cables emit (typically 33KHz). Once the cable has been located, the ground can then be marked to show the layout of the cable so that when the excavation takes place the cable is not damaged in any way.
If there are buried pipes, then a Generator (Genny) can be used by connecting the Genny via a signal clamp to one end of the pipe, it will then emit a pulse tone down the buried pipe which can be traced using the cable avoidance tool. This will then take away the risk of damaging the pipework when the excavation begins.
To use this equipment effectively the user must be trained, misuse can result in loss of life or serious injury to workers. Certain high-end products on the market have depth meters included enabling the user to have a rough idea of how deep the cable/pipe is. All cable avoidance tools need to be calibrated every 12 months.
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