When there are construction works at a site, there’s always a risk that anyone can damage water, sewer and stormwater assets. When they are damaged, concrete and other materials can enter the pipes, leading to costly repairs and disruptions to work.  The flow-on effect impacts not only the site but also neighbours, local businesses, roads and public spaces.

If you’re doing any works, it’s important to communicate with builders on site to ensure ALL water, sewer and stormwater assets (including private sewer drains) are located and protected before starting works. 

That’s why it’s important to follow the five Ps to locate and protect these assets while on site.

Want to know more about the flow on effect?

Take a look at South East Water’s video on the link below to learn more about to follow the five P’s:


Follow the five Ps:

  1. Plan: Contact Dial Before You Dig  (DBYD) and use SEWMap (if you’re in the South East Water service area) – our free downloaded app that provides instant asset information. These two tools are indicative only and internal property drains may not be available on DBYD.
  2. Prepare: Review utility plans and contact the relevant water authority for any questions. Always use an accredited asset locator. Find an accredited asset locator.
  3. Pothole: Confirm the asset locations safely by non-destructive excavation or hand digging.
  4. Protect: Taking measures such as marking locations, cut and seal services, bringing any unsealed sewer branches to the surface and letting others on site know about the asset locations are all ways you can protect the assets.
  5. Proceed: Only after you’ve followed steps one to four.

What’s in it for you?

By sticking to the five P’s you can:

  • Minimise damage to public and private property
  • Reduce delays and disruptions on site
  • Reduce time consuming and costly repairs
  • Avoid reputation damage
  • Reduce insurance claims, excesses and premiums

What happens when assets aren’t protected

Here’s an example of a concrete-filled sewer that workers could have avoided by locating and protecting assets on site.

Do you use Codesafe’s QIN app onsite?

You can access this information and video links on the app, too. Visit our Asset Damage Protection homepage.


Visit South East Water website on locating and protecting water and sewer assets.