Content Hub

Keep up to date with our Content Hub for engaging thought leadership industry news and GeoSLAM updates.

reykjavik

GeoSLAM goes North with new dealer in Iceland

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Autonomous Mapping in Harsh and Hostile Environments

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GeoSLAM Partners with Microsol Resources

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real estate

GeoSLAM helps leading media company Zien24 revolutionise their digital workflow

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New partnership for GeoSLAM and NORMET

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Senior Promotion to bolster GeoSLAM growth

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Home renovation made easy with the ZEB Family

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GEO Business and SPAR 3D Expo: A tale of two events

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Getting to know you: Abhishek Bhartiya

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geomesure service centre

GeoSLAM expands service centre in France with Geomesure

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Safe, fast data capture with ZEB REVO on waste management project

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The Dos and Don’ts of Aerial Surveying

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Experience Strongest Ever SLAM with our upgrade campaign

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GeoSLAM responds to the Geospatial Commission

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Attracting and Retaining the Next Generation of Talent

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Global expansion on the horizon for GeoSLAM

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GeoSLAM feature on NatWest Business Hub

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GeoSLAM Welcomes CSIRO Visitors to UK HQ

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GeoSLAM providing inspiration in maths

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science channel

GeoSLAM mobile technology features in Science Channel Series in the US

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GeoSLAM launches new ZEB-HORIZON 3D Mobile Scanner

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zeb revo rt scanning

GeoSLAM Launches Game-Changing Technology in the UK during Digital Construction Week

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Importance of safety berms at dump sites

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KTP Case Study: Predictive Monitoring of Rail Infrastructure

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Scanning through wire mesh with SITEMONITOR LIVE

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PROCESSMONITOR LIVE shotlisted for Tunnelling Award!

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Automated Stockpile Volume Monitoring

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3D Laser Mapping & GeoSLAM Global Merger Announced

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GeoSLAM’s CSR Strategy to Promote Students’ English Skills

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The benefits of measuring Shotcrete during application

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GeoSLAM to Demo Fast, Easy and Versatile 3D Mobile Laser Scanning at 2018 SPAR3D Conference

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GeoSLAM to showcase the Future of Construction at Geo Business 2018

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GeoSLAM take Geoterra to new heights with ContextCapture Solution from Bentley

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GeoSLAM announces distribution agreement with Cansel in Canada

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GeoSLAM and Corporate Social Responsibility

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GeoSLAM Academy Events prove a hit with customers

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Quickly and Safely Mapping our Underground World

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GeoSLAM announces UK distributor agreement with KOREC

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GeoSLAM celebrates 5 years in business with new HQ, record growth

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GeoSLAM Launch Time & Cost Saving 3D Mobile Laser Scanners at Dallas Fall BIM Forum 2017

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GeoSLAM and Bentley Systems join forces to take mobile reality modelling indoors

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GeoSLAM Changing The Economics of 3D Laser Scanning with new product launches at INTERGEO

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Verity – GeoSLAM Collaboration Advances Real-Time Construction Quality Management

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Reducing Scanning Time of Historic Sites from Weeks to Hours

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Record Six Months for GeoSLAM Thanks to Boom in Digital Engineering

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GeoSLAM Unveils Predictions for Engineering’s Digital Future

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University Challenge: To Deliver Rapid 3D Results in Half the Time

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GeoSLAM Global Network Expands Both East and West

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GeoSLAM to feature in upcoming BBC Show Countryfile

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Making Forest Surveys a Walk in the Park

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GeoSLAM signs up Seiler Instrument for Midwest USA Distribution

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GeoSLAM Expands Far East Operations with New Distributors

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GeoSLAM Announces Real-Time Upgrade For ZEB-REVO

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Danish Distributor Attends Annual Surveying Congress

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GeoSLAM Scores Top Marks at Century Old School

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Rapid Mobile Scanning for As Built Building Surveys

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Taking care to save costs and minimise disruption without compromising accuracy

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The Future of Hazardous Unmanned Mobile Mapping

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GeoSLAM Launches Zeb Cam for Zeb Revo

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GeoSLAM and Blackdog Robotics sign partnership agreement to supply unmanned mobile indoor mapping solutions

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GeoSLAM Zeb Revo Shortlisted for Wichmann Awards

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ZEB1 makes history, mapping Brei Holm for BBC’s ‘Coast’

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OPTRON Appointed as GeoSLAM Dealer for Sub Saharan Africa

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GeoSLAM Announces Global Distribution Agreement for 3D Reshaper & PointCab

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Laser Scanning the Rising Star Cave in the Cradle of Humankind, South Africa

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Engineering results ten times faster than traditional survey methods

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Importance of safety berms at dump sites

Maintaining haul road or overburden tip berms (or bunds) at the correct height has become a safety critical operation at mines and dumps around the globe. Berm maintenance has in the past been a minor operational task, requiring occasional grader or dozer attention of secondary importance. Perhaps not so any more.

Since 1990 there has been an average of one fatality per year due to inadequate safety berms at dumping points (Giacomini and Theoni, 2015) which were completely preventable had sufficient attention been paid to the issue. Indeed, it is thought that dump-point related accidents are rather more severe than other surface mine accidents and consequent lost productivity.

Any area within a mine which has heavy traffic flows, and in particular with reversing operations, can end up being an accident ‘hot-spot’. Research by the U.S. Bureau of Mines (May 1990) found that dump-point accidents over a 4-year period in the industry lead to thousands of lost workdays and several fatalities, the majority of the incidents being related to haul trucks.

Even with damaging statistics like these, the design, construction and most importantly, the maintenance of berms have, aside from some recent government industry oversight departments’ intervention, been traditionally determined by ‘rule of thumb’ experience. The inclusion of minimum berm heights related to the axle height of the largest vehicles operating in the area, along with guidelines for the thickness and firmness of the berm, should have solved the problem. This is particularly so as more recent studies (Giacomini and Theoni, 2015) indicated the importance of berms as a safety barrier for reversing haul trucks as a ‘tactile’ feedback mechanism to drivers, assisting them in identifying when they should stop and where the edge of the dump was.

The height of the berms in any mine is vitally important and is a critical safety mechanism which contributes to the overall safety of haul truck drivers.

Further considerations relating to the berms are material and geometry, which can be summarized as:

  • Material type used to construct the berm. This is normally re-mined material that can contain various sizes and types of material. This also has an impact on the angle of repose that the material can achieve, which relates indirectly to its effectiveness.
  • Berm height. Various berm heights are present on a mine however, the rule of thumb still applies to the berm being at least half the diameter of the largest truck in operation,
  • Geometry of the berm. Recent studies showed that where possible, trapezoidal shape should be applied to berms at the dump-point, as they are efficient in keeping their shape after various impacts from trucks at dumping.
  • Maintenance of the berm. Without constant and efficient maintenance of the berms, the likelihood of berm failure increases after each impact from dumping trucks
  • Angle of approach. Haul truck drivers should be adequately trained to ensure that 90° angle is used at dumping sites. 75° angle of approach has a dramatic and negative effect on the stability, shape and effectiveness of berms. This will allow higher wheel climb and possibly lead to the haul truck going over the berm.

If the berm height, and to some extent the geometry, are crucial factors for safety, then the knowledge of when corrective maintenance on them is required is critical to operations. A completely automated berm height measuring system based on laser scanning clearly has the potential to remove not only ‘rule of thumb’ based decision making, but also allow a fully integrated alerting system to be provided over a mine communication network. Once deficient berms are identified and located, relevant mine staff can be informed and tasking for grader or dozer operators created, either manually or automatically. If synchronized into a fleet management system, haul trucks can be re-routed to alternate dumps or haul routes in real time maintaining operational efficiency.

With global demand for commodities rising and mining activities increasing, pressure on mining companies to stay competitive through productivity enhancements while keeping employees safe, is a major focus and an undisputed imperative. Having safety berms in place, and in accordance with safety guidelines, is an essential part of the goal of ensuring accident and fatality free mines, whilst improving efficiency by reducing lost workdays and maintaining production.

To find out more about our berm monitoring solution, visit our berms page.