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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of spoils on the stability of slopes/highwalls 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
256855  Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of spoils on the stability of slopes/highwalls 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Mining and Minerals 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 06 - Manufacturing, Engineering and Technology Fabrication and Extraction 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 4  NQF Level 04 
REGISTRATION STATUS REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE SAQA DECISION NUMBER
Reregistered  2018-07-01  2023-06-30  SAQA 06120/18 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2024-06-30   2027-06-30  

In all of the tables in this document, both the pre-2009 NQF Level and the NQF Level is shown. In the text (purpose statements, qualification rules, etc), any references to NQF Levels are to the pre-2009 levels unless specifically stated otherwise.  

This unit standard does not replace any other unit standard and is not replaced by any other unit standard. 

PURPOSE OF THE UNIT STANDARD 
This unit standard will be useful for people who are pursuing a career in Rock Engineering.

This unit standard is intended to promote general skills, knowledge and understanding of the effect of spoils on the stability of slopes/highwalls in the mining and minerals sector in order to ensure knowledgeable and informed workers.

People credited with this unit standard are able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of spoils.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the factors governing slope failure.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of spoils on water runoff and flow into slopes/highwalls.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of failure of the spoil on the stability of slopes/highwalls. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    It is assumed that learners are already competent in:
  • Communication and Mathematical literacy at NQF Level 3. 

  • UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    N/A 

    Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Demonstrate an understanding of spoils. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The definition of spoils is provided in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The methods of creating spoils is provided in the context of mining operations. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Truck and shovel.
  • Drag line.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Explanations are provided on the placement of spoils during different cycles of slope/highwall mining. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the factors governing slope failure. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The forces acting on a block of ground resting on a planar inclined surface are described using simple, well annotated sketches. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The requirements for the block to slide are explained and related to the properties of the failure plane in accordance with legal and operational requirements. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The effect that a spoil or waste dump would have on the gravitational loading of a potentially unstable slope/highwall block are described in accordance with operational requirements. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Size of spoil.
  • Position of spoil relative to given slope.
  • Density of spoil.
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of spoils on water runoff and flow into slopes/highwalls. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The influence that the geometry of a spoil resting on a slope/highwall has on the runoff of water and the areas of water catchment are explained in terms of operational requirements. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The profile of the water table and levels of saturation with and without the presence of a spoil resting on a slope/highwall are described in terms of operational requirements. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The effect of the profile of the water table on pore pressure and effective stress is explained in terms of operational requirements. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The manner in which the water pressure increases the risk of sliding is described with reference to the reduction in shear strength of potential release surfaces that may dominate failure. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of failure of the spoil on the stability of slopes/highwalls. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The relationship between the angle of repose of a spoil and the friction angle of the spoiled material are provided and related to the stability of the spoil slope in terms of operational requirements. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The likely modes of failure for both compacted and unconsolidated material on the spoil are described in terms of legal and operational requirements. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Sliding on induced weakness planes.
  • Rolling rock.
  • Circular failure.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The hazards and risks associated with rolling spoiled rock impinging on nearby slopes/highwalls are discussed in terms of legal and operational requirements. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Methods for preventing rocks from spoils rolling onto slopes/highwalls and haul roads are described in terms of legal and operational requirements. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
  • Positioning of spoils.
  • Use of fences.
  • Construction of ditches/pits.
  • Buttressing the toe of the spoil.
  • Berms.
     


  • UNIT STANDARD ACCREDITATION AND MODERATION OPTIONS 
  • Anyone assessing a learner or moderating the assessment of a learner against this unit standard must be registered as an assessor with the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA.
  • Any institution offering learning that will enable the achievement of this unit standard must be accredited as a provider with the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA.
  • Assessment and moderation of assessment will be overseen by the relevant Education, Training, Quality, Assurance (ETQA) Body, or with an ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding with the relevant ETQA, according to the ETQA's policies and guidelines for assessment and moderation.
  • Moderation must include both internal and external moderation of assessments, unless ETQA policies specify otherwise.
  • Anyone wishing to be assessed against this unit standard may apply to be assessed by any assessment agency, assessor or provider institution that is accredited by the relevant ETQA. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
    The following essential embedded knowledge is addressed in an integrated way in the unit standard:

    Knowledge that the assessor will evaluate:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of spoils.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the factors governing slope failure.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of spoils on water runoff and flow into slopes/highwalls.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the effect of failure of the spoil on the stability of slopes/highwalls.

    Causes and effects (Occupational Health and Safety):
  • Use of equipment.
  • Use of personal protective equipment.
  • Adherence to occupational health and safety requirements.
  • Work related hazards and associated risks.

    Regulations, legislation, agreements, policies and standards:
  • Occupational health, safety and environmental legislation and regulations.
  • Quality policies, standards and agreements. 

  • UNIT STANDARD DEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOME 
    N/A 

    UNIT STANDARD LINKAGES 
    N/A 


    Critical Cross-field Outcomes (CCFO): 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO IDENTIFYING 
    Identify and solve problems and make decisions using critical and creative thinking.

    Note: The ability to identify the hazards and risks associated with the placement and construction of a spoil in the vicinity of a slope. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    Collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate information.

    Note: The ability of the learner to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the forces that govern the stability of inclined surfaces. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    Communicate effectively, using visual, mathematical and/or language skills in the modes of oral and/or written presentations.

    Note: The use of neat annotated sketches and simple equations. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    Use science and technology effectively and critically showing responsibility towards the environment and health of others.

    Note: The use of industry accepted methods of assessing the risk of slope failure and applying the effect of spoils in risk assessments. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO DEMONSTRATING 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the world as a set of related systems by recognising that problem-solving contexts do not exist in isolation.

    Note: The knowledge and understanding that the size and placement of the spoil may influence the stability of nearby slopes/highwalls and consequently the safety of personnel not directly in site of the spoil. 

    UNIT STANDARD ASSESSOR CRITERIA 
    N/A 

    REREGISTRATION HISTORY 
    As per the SAQA Board decision/s at that time, this unit standard was Reregistered in 2012; 2015. 

    UNIT STANDARD NOTES 
    Terminology:

    Specified Requirements:

    Specified requirements include legal and site-specific requirements and are contained in one or more of the following documents:

    Legal:
  • Relevant Acts: e.g. Mine Health & Safety Act, 1996 (Act no 29/1996), and Minerals Act and Regulations, 1991 (Act no 50/1991).
  • Mandatory Codes of Practice.
  • SABS and other relevant Standards.
  • Chief Inspector of Mines' Directives.

    Site-Specific:
  • Hazard Identification and Risk Assessments (HIRA).
  • Occupational Health and Safety Risk Management Programme.
  • Managerial Instructions.
  • Mine Standard Procedures.
  • List of Recorded OH&S Risks.
  • Working Guides.
  • Equipment and Materials Specifications. 

  • QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Elective  62796   Further Education and Training Certificate: Strata Control Operations  Level 4  NQF Level 04  Reregistered  2023-06-30  MQA 


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
    This information shows the current accreditations (i.e. those not past their accreditation end dates), and is the most complete record available to SAQA as of today. Some Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionaries have a lag in their recording systems for provider accreditation, in turn leading to a lag in notifying SAQA of all the providers that they have accredited to offer qualifications and unit standards, as well as any extensions to accreditation end dates. The relevant Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionary should be notified if a record appears to be missing from here.
     
    NONE 



    All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.