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Microdrilling rig that has maximum potential.

Byline: Kelley Price Business Reporter

A TEESSIDE drilling firm that investigates building failures, from sinkholes to subsidence, is hoping a six-figure investment in a new drill can grow business, leading to more jobs.

Geoinvestigate collects evidence for construction disputes and litigation among other services - and says drilling remains the only "conclusive way of proving there are no mine workings or sink holes beneath a site".

The Stokesley firm has spent the last three years designing and making a PS100,000 microdrilling rig that investigates subsidence, landslides, sinkholes collapses. It hopes the investment will secure the future of the existing workforce and pave the way for expansion and recruitment. The rig can quickly locate caves, mine shafts and sinkholes in confined spaces. Geoinvestigate, based on Terry Dicken Industrial Estate, investigates sites for new builds, house extensions, building subsidence and land contamination, with expert geologists and engineers from the firm's three ground investigation offices in the Northeast, Cumbria and Reading being called on regularly to investigate sites.

Recent work includes special site investigation at HMS Victory Naval Dock Yard Portsmouth and drilling boreholes near HMS Astute nuclear submarine for BAE Systems at Barrow-in-Furness. The firm also investigated the death of a pipe-laying contractor who was buried by soil when the trench he was working in suddenly collapsed.

Managing director Ross Nicholson said the drilling of boreholes remains the only conclusive way of proving that there are no mine workings or sink holes beneath a site.

"Today you can get an expensive mining surveyors report which remains unclear and vague and casts more doubt upon the mining history of a site than it clears up."

Stuart Howe Geoinvestigate's operations manager said: "We've had a lot of sleepless nights modifying and adjusting the design. The undoubted success of microdrill means we're going to be taking on more staff in the near future and we already have a second machine on order and may even need a third very shortly to deal with our increasing workload."


Site investigation firm and drilling contractor Geoinvestigate of Stokesley has recently |received delivery of a microdrilling rig

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Sep 15, 2015
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