Northern Vac Services of Fort St. John has partnered with Tailored Vac Services to offer experienced in-house hydro excavation and hydrovac truck services.
Hydro excavation trucks – commonly referred to as hydrovacs – offer a more reliable and effective way to excavate as compared to traditional methods. Hydro excavation via a hydrovac truck is the process in which high-pressure water is used to loosen the soil and dig a hole or trench. The wet, muddy excavated material is then suctioned into a tank mounted on a hydrovac truck and carried offsite to a designated dumping location. The technology allows for quick and precise excavations which require less backfill, less labor and causes significantly less environmental impact than conventional excavation methods.
Traditional “yellow-iron” equipment and manual digging methods can easily be replaced by hydrovacs, bringing an array of benefits to users. Hydrovac trucks eliminate the use of sharp metal edges that are used in traditional excavation methods, which are at fault for the majority of digging accidents every year. Without these components, hydrovacs and the technique of digging with water and vacuum mitigate the risks of damaging underground utilities.
In regards to precision, hydrovacs often utilize a handheld ‘wand’ component that is used to break down the soil with water. This precision ensures that the only area of the jobsite being affected by the excavation is the exact site that needs excavating. Large, yellow-iron equipment often disturbs the area around the excavation, which can hinder productivity and overall job completion time. Hydrovacs require less labor, backfill and restoration which results in a precise and cost-effective technique.
Uses of Hydrovac Trucks in Maintaining Oil and Gas Pipelines
The safety and maintenance of the oil and gas pipeline industry is extremely crucial, and there are a large number of risks involved. These industries have underlying pipelines supplying oil and gas all over the country. These resources are valuable, and any kind of pipeline mishap can lead to huge losses, fines, damage to infrastructure and destruction of the environment. To eliminate any kind of losses and avoid a disaster, it is important to maintain the safety of these pipelines. Hydrovac trucks are the simplest way to dig the land while keeping the pipes and other underground utilities safe. Here are some uses of hydrovac trucks for the oil and gas industry.
1. Directional Drilling & Bore Support
Directional drilling is the practice of drilling non-vertical bores. It can be broken down into four main groups: oilfield directional drilling, utility installation directional drilling (horizontal directional drilling), directional boring, and surface in seam drilling. Hydrovac trucks offer drill support by helping clear and evacuate any debris during the drilling process, creating a cleaner, more efficient and more effective drilling process.
2. Plant Turnarounds
A plant turnaround is a scheduled stoppage of part or all of a plant’s operations. Usually, operations need to stop for maintenance to maintain regulatory compliance. We provide plant turnaround and industrial cleaning services through our hydrovac trucks including high pressure water washing, oil and spill cleanup, and line/tank cleaning.
3. Daylighting (Exposing Utilities)
The first step towards maintaining and repairing oil and gas pipeline is to expose them to the daylight, which is why one of the most common uses of hydrovacs is called “daylighting”. This is the practice of digging to expose and locate underground utilities. During daylighting, the hydrovac truck will use water to break up the ground and the vacuum system to remove the soil onsite. The water and vacuum, if used properly, does not disturb or damage these existing utilities. Contractors often use this method to determine the vertical and horizontal location of underground utilities.
4. Soil Trenching
Hydrovacs are also ideal for soil trenching. This process digs narrow trenches to install pipelines, cables, and various in-ground utilities. Using hydrovacs for this task ensures that only the area needing excavation is being affected with the precision that only hydrovac units provide. In addition, hydrovacs are able to do this job even on frozen surfaces, which is difficult for a backhoe or trencher. The hydrovac gives operators the option to use hot water to break down the frozen ground and vacuum it into the debris tank.
5. Piling Hole Excavation/Potholing
Hydrovacs offer a type of precision in excavating that is not available with any other type of machinery. With this capability, hydro excavation trucks are used to dig holes of various diameters and depths to lay all types of pilings. Hydrovacs can be used for creating trenches for the foundations of new construction and installations. It often happens that new construction takes place over the area which already has other gas and oil lines, so hydrovacs allow for a careful and tactful excavation.
6. Cold Weather Digging
As previously mentioned above, hydrovacs can excavate even during cold and freezing weather conditions. Contrary to the capabilities of manual and traditional digging, cold weather does not restrict hydrovacs. Hydrovac trucks are equipped with functions to excavate with heated water used to breakup frozen soil and get the job done in any winter conditions.
7. Debris Removal
Hydrovac trucks can easily remove debris and clean out structures without affecting surrounding areas or structures. Traditional excavation equipment features heavy, mechanical components that often need a range of room to work properly. The boom component on a hydrovac truck provides the operator with more flexibility and maneuverability with commands at their fingertips to determine exactly where the boom needs to be – in both height and depth. Hydrovac trucks can remove this type of debris in both wet and dry forms including rough debris such as rocks, gravel, and sand.
8. Contaminated Soil Cleanups
In the event that hazardous materials are spilled, hydrovac trucks are the ideal solution to clean up the contaminated soil quickly and effectively. Contaminated soil, fuel spills and hazardous waste can pose a large problem for the landowner and the environment. Our hydrovac trucks are equipped with pressurized water and a powerful vacuum to gently remove the contaminated soil and safely store it. We then take the contaminated soil to a designated dumping facility.
Northern Vac Services are your qualified and experienced hydrovac service experts. For more information on our hydrovac trucks and the services we offer, please call (250) 785-5435 or visit https://www.northernvac.com/contact/.