Preparing your site for timber mats: what you should do beforehand
Timber mats are an easy way to put in place ground protection, temporary roadways, and lifting platforms that combine crane mats with outrigger pads.
Generally speaking, it’s fast and easy to lay timber mats on-site, but there are still some best practice tips and tricks to keep in mind when preparing to lay bog mats and keep your construction site safe.
Here are five things to remember when getting ready to lay timber mats on a construction site or other location.
If you plan to build a stable working platform in the middle of a wetland area or tidal zone, remember you will need to get your bog mats there in the first place.
Make sure you have a clear access route in mind – you could even hire extra bog mats to create a temporary roadway so that the rest of your timber mats can be delivered to the right location.
2. Quantity and type
It should go without saying that you need to know how many bog mats you need and what type of timber mats to use, but it’s worth putting some extra thought into this.
For example, the quantity you need might depend on which way around you lay your mats – so check whether they should be laid end-to-end or with their longest edges adjacent, as this will affect the length of roadway or size of platform you can create.
3. Duration and durability
An extra factor when choosing the type of timber mats you need is their durability and how long you want to leave them in place.
Choose a higher durability of tropical hardwood mat for challenging environments, such as tidal areas and completely waterlogged wetlands.
4. Lifting machinery
Check if your chosen timber mats have lifting points for a forklift truck or equivalent lifting tool, such as a hand-pumped trolley jack.
Remember if you plan to use lifting equipment to move your bog mats into place, you’ll need a safe working platform for that equipment, which may mean a little hand-lifting to put the first ground protection mats down and create the initial dry access route.
5. Fixtures and fittings
Finally, be aware of any additional bolts or brackets that you can use to secure adjacent mats to one another, so you’re ready to add them as you go along.
This can be especially important in tidal zones, where the water currents can shift mats out of position, so keep them safe and secure using any appropriate method for a single solid platform throughout your job.