One associates the word excavation generally with archeology where remains of ancient civilizations are dug up after thousands of years from beneath the earth. The excavator uses specialized tools and equipment as also certain explosives to remove top soil and rocks to get below the surface.

Similarly, in construction and engineering too, different types of excavation is done, based on a specific purpose or the material being excavated. Vancouver Island-based Dirt Island Excavation is one such excavator company that carries out the following excavation procedures based on both material and type.


Channel excavation comprises removing materials from drainage ditches and channels, usually to alter water flow or to increase capacity. This helps in alleviate flooding or preventing sediment buildup and stagnation.


This excavation is done for bridge construction and to remove unwanted materials that tend to impede development of bridge substructures and foundations for supporting the bridge.


Drainage relates to removing water from trenches, ditches, agricultural sites, storm drains, runoff drainage, and also from any structure relating to such drainage. Ditches are excavated for funneling water away from habitable, infrastructural, and agricultural areas to prevent harm from water stagnation.


This type of excavation involves removing materials to clear the way for construction. Gravel or soil are removed from a sandbox or borrow pit for use in another site for fill, grading, or mixing with concrete.


This pertains to soil removal just below the topsoil and involves earth removal for laying structural foundations and/or digging drainage ditches.


Excavation of huge deposits of sediment in waterways to make them passable is called dredging. It takes place underwater, mostly in river mouths or shallow passages of oceans to enhance navigation for boat traffic.


This is another material-based excavation procedure. Muck, which is an undesirable combination of dirty soil and water and which is likely to contaminate the soil is removed completely to make an area habitable, safe, and passable. The process involves either removing the unwanted muck elsewhere or spreading it out in order to allow the soil to dry.


Foundations structures that support bridges, buildings, and other heavy structures are called footings. They spread the load to prevent such heavy structures from sinking or collapsing. Footing excavation is done after the structural site is properly graded first. This procedure requires high precision as the concrete for the footings are poured first and left to set thereafter.


Roadway excavation is done to remove the excavated materials to another site to make way for new road construction. These materials may, however, also find use as building materials for the new roadway or for building embankments. In certain cases, unwanted slope materials are removed with excavated materials from other sites replacing them.


Excavation of large areas is called stripping. Usually, the area is cleared of gravel, topsoil, rocks, and sand, followed by grading. Done mostly at large construction or heavy engineering sites.


When rocky surfaces are cleared to enhance engineering or construction projects, rock excavation is said to have been done. This is not only more challenging but also requires special equipment and explosives to break up and remove the rocks.


This known as specific excavation where the topsoil, comprising the soil’s uppermost level and vegetation, are removed.


The excavating here is done underground and involves specialized tools, techniques, and equipment. Diagonal or vertical shafts and horizontal tunnels are dug to build roadways, canals, sewage systems, and subways.

The classification of excavation is also done according to the work’s purpose and includes cut and fill excavation, trench excavation, and basement excavation.