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Trenchless Pioneers – Jim Pound

Trenchless Pioneer Jim Pound

In a bid to celebrate the achievements and growth of the trenchless industry, Trenchless Australasia will be running a new question and answer segment.

 In this edition, the Trenchless Pioneer is Jim Pound, the General Manager of S&Z Australia. This is his story. 

In your own words, how would you explain what the trenchless industry is?
The trenchless industry provides methods that allow infrastructure to be delivered safely with minimum impact on the environment and the community. 

How did you become involved in the trenchless industry?
My initial exposure to trenchless was in the early 1990s when working as a plumber. I engaged the services of a pipe bursting company to replace a very deep sewer in Ardeer. Since then, I have worked with several companies including suppliers and trenchless specialist companies. These companies exposed me to various trenchless technologies such as slip lining, pipe cracking, pipe bursting, fold and form pipe lining, HDD and microtunelling.

What is a standout trenchless project or milestone you have been involved in?
Our involvement in a large project in the NSW Mountains which required us to deliver over 6 km of communication and power through extremely hard rock in a remote and challenging environment is a project that we are extremely proud of. Working day and night in snow and rain to deliver the project within the necessary time frame, requires great dedication from our staff and we are extremely grateful for their commitment.

What is the best part of trenchless technology? And how has it evolved since you first became part of the industry?
Trenchless technology is always evolving. New techniques and improvements to current methods see the industry continually growing and improving. Most companies within trenchless technology are prepared to share experiences to help improve the industry and there is good collaboration within the various companies even if they may compete at times.

Which form of trenchless technology do you think has had the most transformation and why?
Tunnel boring continues to evolve and appears to be becoming a preferred method of trenchless technology due to the advancements in techniques which see longer lengths and larger sizes achievable.

Where do you see the trenchless industry in the next 10-20 years?
If the industry continues to grow at the same rate it has in the past 20 years, I am excited to imagine what may be possible. I expect the opportunity to reduce emissions and minimise impact on the environment and provide safer work practices will see projects that would normally be delivered by traditional open trench methods be replaced by trenchless technologies.

With trenchless technology having a strong ability to reduce the impact on the environment, what more do you believe the industry needs to do in order to further reduce emissions and the impact on the environment?
The industry should lobby water authorities and other utilities to educate them of the benefits trenchless technologies provide to the environment. The equipment manufactures should continue to invest in technology to investigate alternate power sources for plant and equipment. 

How has the industry progressed in being more diverse?
When I commenced in the industry there were no women in the trenchless space. Over the years we have witnessed more women become involved and prove to be extremely valuable contributors to the industry. S&Z Australia welcomes and encourages women to apply for any position we have available.

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This article appeared in the December edition of Trenchless Australasia. Access the digital copy of the magazine here.

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