The simplified objectives of a Phase I detailed shallow soil investigation are to:

  • Identify any potential hazards
  • Define the ground conditions, including detailed soil profile and groundwater occurrences within the zone of influence of foundation work
  • Broadly classify the land which is to be developed in accordance with the relevant site class designations for single-storey and double-storey type 1 masonry buildings
  • Provide the geotechnical basis for safe and appropriate land use planning, infrastructure design, housing unit design, and the formulation of precautionary measures and risk management procedures
  • Gather factual data which has a bearing on the determination of housing subsidy variations and the installation of township services

The basic report structure of a Phase I detailed shallow soil investigation comprises at least the following headings as per SANS634:2012:

  1. Introduction
  2. Terms of reference
  3. Information used in the study
  4. Site description
  5. Nature of investigation
  6. Site geology and geohydrology
    1. General
    2. Soil profile
    3. Groundwater table
  7. Geotechnical evaluation
    1. Engineering and material characteristics
    2. Slope stability and erosion
    3. Excavation classification with respect to services
  8. Site class designations
  9. Foundation recommendations and solutions
  10. Drainage
  11. Special precautionary measures
  12. Conclusions
  13. Recommendations

Other relevant headings may also be added depending on the constraints encountered and nature of site and investigation. The guideline headings is for non-dolomitic land. Refer to SANS634:2012 for detailed requirements.