QUALITY CONTROL CHECKLIST FOR EXCAVATION WORK

excavation checklist
excavation checklist

The following checklist should be used as a guide for better quality control over soil excavation.

(1) Before starting excavation work, take photographs of the construction area, ensure that sufficient cross-sections are taken, and continue to take progress pictures during construction.


(2) Review the bore’s log to determine the height of the water level and to determine if unsuitable soil is likely to be encountered. Dehydration equipment may be necessary, and arrangements should be made to dispose of unsuitable material.

(3) Check post utility maps before excavation begins to locate existing lines not shown on the contract drawings.

(4) Evaluate the material being excavated against the log of the boring. If differences are found, consult with your supervisor to determine the course of action to be taken.

(5) Check that approved disposal areas and haul roads are used.

(6) Check the location of necessary protection for sanitary and storm drains, electrical cables, communication cables and gas lines which are subject to damage by heavy earth-moving equipment.

(7) Insure satisfactory material use from the excavation.

(8) Determine the moisture condition of the appropriate excavation material in advance of the requirements.

(9) Emphasize that the excavation is carried out in the order specified.

(10) Ensure that drainage is provided continuously as excavation progresses.

(a) Do not allow pond water in any construction area.

(b) Make sure that the drainage ditch is free flowing.

(11) Ensure that the necessary tests for the bearing characteristics of the soil have been carried out upon completion of the excavation.

(12) Coordinating plan of credit quarrying to ensure that the right materials are available as required for the construction of the embankment, and that borrowings are not used unnecessarily when excavation materials are available.

(13) Inspect the credit pits:

  • enough stripping.
  • systematic removal of material.
  • Satisfactory drainage.

(14) After aggregate material removal, check borough pit areas for final sizing and drainage requirements.

(15) Determine the average quantity for each type of haulage equipment. Record daily load calculations for different classifications of excavators if required for partial payment.

(16) Take the last cross-section.

(17) Provide that the quantity survey is carried out for payment purposes.

(18) To check all excavation equipment for compliance with general safety requirements.

building work

In case of construction works the following checks should be done during the excavation process:

(1) Check the contractor’s location, identity and required safety for site utilities prior to the commencement of operations.

(2) The material excavated for use as fill shall be free from limbs, stumps, roots, brush, vegetation and debris from the construction of foundations, sidewalks, utilities, etc.

(3) See that the foundation bearing material matches the boring.

(4) Check for proper filling of all buried areas or holes. (Filling under the bottom to fix the excavator is not allowed.)

(5) Inspect the sides of the excavation for a safe slope (angle of repose) or, if the sides are built perpendicular, to check the adequacy of the bracing required to securely maintain the sides.

(6) Define the provisions made to prevent damage to nearby property.

(7) Observe the method of excavation and disposal of water.

(8) Make sure that footing beds are not corroded or soft in waterlogged areas.

(9) See that the proper sequence of excavations is done for the components of the building at different heights.

(10) Inspect the excavation of grounds and foundations for sufficient clearance to permit construction of the form, installation of services and inspection.

(11) Identify the corrective methods used in cases of over-excavation.


  • Do not modify or alter the installed upgrades without the written approval of the Contracting Officer.
  • Correct over-excavation by placing an approved, compacted backfill or concrete fill, depending on the location.
  • Keep a detailed record of any such corrective action.

(12) Check provisions for preventing surface drainage in the excavated area.

(13) See that footing drains are installed where necessary.

(14) Set out special instructions and/or requirements when excavation requires the use of caissons and cofferdams.

(15) Check the safety requirements for heavy equipment working close to deep excavation.

Er. Mukesh Kumar

Photo of author
Er. Mukesh Kumar is Editor in Chief and Co-Funder at ProCivilEngineer.com Civil Engineering Website. Mukesh Kumar is a Bachelor in Civil Engineering From MIT. He has work experience in Highway Construction, Bridge Construction, Railway Steel Girder work, Under box culvert construction, Retaining wall construction. He was a lecturer in a Engineering college for more than 6 years.