In late 2021, EODEX were approached by an independent UXO consultancy who had been tasked with confirming that the risk of encountering UXO on the route for a Fibre Optic cable running into central Brighton was reduced to ALARP. The end client had already performed a Geophysical survey of the route for the FO cable and this had shown 5 targets with UXO like qualities which were therefore assessed as potential UXO (pUXO).
EODEX reviewed the survey results and the pUXO positions and decided upon a phased approach to investigating the targets. Phase 1 was the investigation of 2 buried beach targets located in the intertidal or ‘surf zone’. Investigation could only take place at periods of Low Water. Equipped with GPS positioning equipment and hand-held UXO locators, the 2-man team were able to relocate the ferrous items and then oversaw the operation with assistance from mechanical plant to excavate the target items in a controlled and methodical manner.
The second phase was the investigation of 3 targets located just beyond the surf zone which required the use of a diving team. EODEX worked with one of our partnered diving suppliers and augmented the team with an EOD Supervisor and specialist EOD Diver to ensure that the UXO investigation and subsequent identification was carried out safely, swiftly and cost effectively.
Although no UXO was found, all 5 locations were investigated and scrap metal items removed for suitable disposal. The client received the required ALARP certification and the cable lay was able to proceed.
The intertidal area is always a challenging environment for UXO investigation but EODEX’s team of former Royal Navy EOD personnel are well versed in planning, managing and conducting UXO projects in difficult areas, often under time pressure.
Safety during pUXO investigation is always the priority but this task, in a busy area of one of the UK’s busiest seaside towns bought some very specific challenges and restrictions. EODEX were able to work with our client and the local authorities to ensure that the task was fully understood, all risks were fully assessed and removed or reduced, and the task was completed on time, on budget and to the entire satisfaction of the client and the local authorities.