Geophysics during the COVID 19 pandemic - update January 2021



Update for lockdown of January 2021

We are currently still surveying broadly within the restrictions as set out in our original article, see further below. Although we are continuing to avoid certain areas, such as those with open public access and sites that would require accommodation, we are happy to discuss these issues as often work can be completed within one day of survey or split into separate surveys so as to avoid problems of accommodation for example. Please be aware that a number of other factors may affect the duration of a survey, in particular ground conditions and weather which can both be problematic at this time of year.

Archaeological Surveys Ltd have been fortunate in being able to continue survey safely through the pandemic with adherence to Government guidance.

This has been possible in that we are a family business and all work has been on agricultural land where public access is limited to rights of way only. We have made some small amendments to Risk Assessments and some limited operational changes to ensure safe working. Geophysical survey is always associated with potential risks and in particular hazards associated with a number of infectious diseases so that our normal operating procedures are quite compatible with dealing with COVID 19. For example agricultural gates are always assumed to carry animal borne pathogens some of which may be deadly, such as leptospirosis, so we have always carried sanitisers and PPE that can limit the risk of infection.

We are currently not working within live construction sites and to ensure social distancing we are not meeting with clients or landowners or attending any inductions etc. We are also avoiding survey within areas of uncontrolled public access such as parks and playing fields. Due to a lack of accommodation, we have a restriction on where we can work but this depends on the size of the area to be surveyed and its accessibility rather than setting any specific limits on distance. Most fieldwork is undertaken by company director David Sabin who is a highly experienced surveyor, some surveys may require additional help which comes from David's wife Kerry Donaldson who is also a company director. To ensure a safe system of work we have regular communication between the field and office as it is possible to operate our equipment with a mobile phone or radio attached; this is an important aspect of our work as other types of magnetometer, for example, cannot be operated correctly where the operator has a mobile phone or radio in close proximity.

We hope to continue to offer geophysics safely as the pandemic continues as we feel it is vital to provide support to infrastructure, energy and construction within this period of great uncertainty.

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1 West Nolands
Nolands Road
Wiltshire
SN11 8YD

e: info@archaeological-surveys.co.uk
t: 01249 814231