Have Questions About Guardian #2301 Trench Shield - Watch This FAQ Video

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August 24, 2023 at 11:58:16 AM PDT August 24, 2023 at 11:58:16 AM PDTth, August 24, 2023 at 11:58:16 AM PDT

Check out this video to find out answers to the most commonly asked questions about our #2301 Guardian Aluminium Trench Shield...

Guardian Trench Shields have your back

Looking for a strong, lightweight, civil and drainage aluminium trench shield system that'll protect lives from trench collapse and fit on the back of a ute? TransQuip has it.

Every day, around New Zealand, Guardian Trench Shields protect workers from the risk of trench collapse and, as a result, life-changing injuries and even death.

As you'll know, trenches are one of the most dangerous places to be while working on drainage and civil sites, with the potential danger of walls caving in ever present (learn more about the speed a trench can collapse in!). Having the right gear and following the correct procedures is not only vital to staff safety, efficiency, and morale; it's the law.

Lightweight shield gets a thumbs-up

One of the most widely sizes used in the certified-compliant Guardian aluminium trench shield range is the 2.4m x 1.2m (#2301). Strong, durable, and easy to use, it's possibly one of the most important pieces of kit ever to ride on the back of a work ute.

The aluminium construction means the lightweight trench shoring has panels weighing approximately only 55kg each. That means it can be handled by two people. (As a comparison - steel would weigh around two to three times as much.) It's a great all-rounder, ideal as a maintenance unit, and excellent when accessing sites where space is very tight or in restricted areas. It cuts down on extra machinery use too!

Even when fully set up (2 panels, 4 struts, 8 pins and clips) this lightweight trench shield still only weighs 150kg - so it can be easily, and safely, lifted by a small, 1.7 tonne digger using the handy, inbuilt lifting points. Check out the video on this blog to see how easy it is to make these up.

High mobility, easy to use, rust-free

Superior mobility, and the fact the shield can be dismantled in minutes, means it can be moved quickly around busy sites (or even between) sites. This cuts downtime to a minimum.

Another benefit of the aluminium trench shields is that, unlike steel, they won't rust. That's a big advantage in longevity, and when working in often wet and muddy New Zealand conditions.

How it all stacks up

The very versatile system also enables the panels to be stacked up to three high, to a height of 3.6 metres, giving greater working depth. Where the ground conditions are suitable, detachable 600mm legs can also be added. These give additional height and protection and extend the ground clearance from the base of the shield to 600mm, with a strut clearance from 290mm to 890mm.

Adjustable struts (spreader bars) mean the system will easily shore different sized trenches - maintaining supportive pressure on the trench walls. 600-900mm adjustable struts come as standard or choose to swap them out for 1m-1.8m struts depending on your needs. These options will suit a wide variety of trench sizes and most applications and worksites.

Different strut points on the panels make them ideal for working around services, as you are not restricted to just one position.

And the potential uses for lightweight trench shoring don't stop there. It can also be deployed vertically - perfect for short sections of trench. Or even configured to form a 2.4m square manhole using corner joiners instead of the struts.

Load capacity and certification

Used by everyone from major civil companies to small and medium businesses working in drainage and civil, this aluminium trench shield has a safe working load of 20-50 kPa, depending on where struts are positioned.

A reference guide on a panel on every shield provides a safe use guide - and instructions on where struts should be positioned.

Fully certified, Guardian Trench Shields meet, or exceed, all New Zealand standards, along with the standards for Australia, the USA, Britain, and Europe. For peace of mind, a plate that identifies the standards that they meet is on every shield.

Certifications and a Safe Use Manual are also available to help you meet Health & Safety requirements.

When is a trench shield needed?

New Zealand law states that trench protection must be used when working in a trench of 1.5m or deeper. We'd go a bit further and say that any time your head is below ground level (e.g. bending down or kneeling to work on pipes or cables) you need a trench shield.

People will often respond that it's just a quick job. But keep in mind - trenches can (and do) collapse in 1/10th of a second. That's not enough time to get up and get out.

It's also important to be aware of the dangers of wet, sandy or loose soils all of which increase the need for trench shields. For a relatively small country, New Zealand has one of the world's most diverse ranges of soil types - sometimes changing within metres.

Special care also needs to be taken when any equipment or soil loading is nearby, as the weight or vibrations can loosen soil from the trench sides, resulting in a sudden trench collapse.

Purchase or hire?

Choose either or even a combination of both! Because every situation and every company is unique Guardian provides the option of buying or hiring from our extensive range. We also strive to be flexible enough to meet individual needs and changing requirements. For smaller companies or on one-off jobs, trench shield hire might be your best option.

Let's dig a bit deeper

Guardian stocks professional trench shields and shoring gear for everything from small utility manholes to kilometre-long sewer lines.

In addition to the 2.4m x 1.2m shield we've been talking about, the Guardian Trench Shield range includes larger, taller shields perfect for those deeper, longer jobs that require a high strength to weight ratio. Along with the options of the Guardian Modular Panel System, soldier sets, and road plates.

Custom sizes are available on request.

Talk to us about your needs today, our trench (and people) protection experts are ready to help.