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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Evaluate excavation stability when the excavation is re-opened up after a period of time 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
256899  Evaluate excavation stability when the excavation is re-opened up after a period of time 
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 to rock engineering personnel who are responsible to assess the excavation stability before re-opening an excavation.

This unit standard is intended to promote general skills, knowledge and understanding of the evaluation of excavation stability in the mining and minerals sector in order to ensure knowledgeable and informed workers.

People credited with this unit standard are able to:
  • Demonstrate understanding of the causes of loss of excavation integrity.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of unstable ground conditions and support units.
  • Demonstrate the ability to assess the excavation stability.
  • Demonstrate the ability to record and report on the excavation stability evaluation. 

  • 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 understanding of the causes of original closure of the excavation. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The need to investigate the cause of original closure of excavation is explained in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The reason for original closure is explained in the context of mining operations. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Loss of excavation integrity.
  • Grade.
  • Ventilation.
  • Labour.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The potential causes of loss of the excavation integrity is explained in the context of mining operations. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Seismic activity.
  • Falls of ground.
  • High stress to strength ratios.
  • Inadequate support installed.
  • Poor quality support installed.
  • Failure of individual support units.
  • Failure of support system.
  • Time-dependant rock mass or support unit failure.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The consequences of the cause of excavation loss on the ground conditions and support integrity are explained in the context of mining operations. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of unstable ground conditions and support units. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The factors that would indicate excavation wall instability are listed and explained in terms of legal and operational requirements. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Excessive closure or closure rate.
  • Sudden closure.
  • Backbreak.
  • Excessive stress fracturing.
  • Open fractures or geological structures.
  • Excessive bed/layer separation.
  • Relative rock displacements.
  • Loosening or slabbing of rockwalls.
     

  • ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The factors that would indicate unstable support conditions are listed and explained in terms of legal and operational requirements. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Must include:
  • Poor quality of installation.
  • Excessive spacing of support units.
  • Poor condition of support units.
  • Ineffectiveness of installed support units.
  • Unsuitable support type installed.
  • Non-replacement of damaged units.
  • Premature support unit failure.
     

  • SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Demonstrate the ability to assess the excavation stability. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The causes of loss for mine specific excavations that are re-opened after a period of time are investigated and explained in the context of mining operations. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The stability of ground conditions and support units are evaluated for mine specific excavations that are re-opened after a period of time. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The consequences of inadequate stability evaluation are explained in the context of mining operations. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Demonstrate the ability to record and report on the excavation stability evaluation. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The evaluation is recorded according to mine specific procedures. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    The evaluation is communicated to the appropriate personnel in terms of legal and operational requirements. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    The consequences of inadequate evaluation recording and reporting are explained in terms of legal and operational requirements. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    The importance of monitoring ground and support conditions during opening-up operations is explained in terms of legal and operational requirements. 


    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 and understanding that the assessor will evaluate:
  • The causes of original closure of the excavation.
  • Unstable ground conditions and support units.
  • Assessing the excavation stability.
  • Recording and reporting on the excavation stability evaluation.

    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 of the learner to evaluate the ground and support conditions. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO WORKING 
    Work effectively with others as members of a team, group, organisation or community.
  • Note: The ability of the learner to form part of the investigation and monitoring team in areas where excavation stability is being restored. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    Organise and manage themselves and their activities responsibly and effectively.
  • Note: The ability of the learner to execute a logically structured evaluation of the excavation integrity. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    Collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate information.
  • Note: The learner must be able to recognise unstable ground and support conditions. The learner must be able to interpret ground and support conditions to evaluate the integrity of the excavation. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    Communicate effectively, using visual, mathematical and/or language skills in the modes of oral and/or written presentations.
  • Note: The appropriate communication with the relevant personnel with regard to the reporting of hazardous and sub-standard conditions will indicate his/her proficiency in effective communication. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    Use science and technology effectively and critically showing responsibility towards the environment and health of others.
  • Note: The use of risk management strategies in evaluating excavation integrity. 

  • 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 ability of the learner to evaluate conditions in excavations being opened-up after a period of time in an attempt to ensure future excavation stability and safety of workers. 

  • 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:
  • Managerial Instructions.
  • Hazard Identification and Risk Assessments (HIRA).
  • Occupational Health and Safety Risk Management Programme.
  • List of Recorded OH&S Risks.
  • Voluntary Codes of Practice.
  • Manufacturers Specifications.
  • Equipment and Materials Specifications.
  • Working Guides.
  • Mine Standard Procedures.
  • Risk Assessment Documents.
  • South African Bureau of Standards and other standards. 

  • 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.