UXO risk: Top tips

UK construction and development projects face many hazards and one of the most acute is Unexploded Ordnance (UXO). Within the UK, the risk posed by UXO should be considered Low Probability but High Consequence, both in terms of risk to people but also project and financial risk.

The incorrect assessment of the potential UXO risk on a site can result in huge unplanned financial costs, or worse loss of life or serious injury to personnel involved and the subsequent commercial damage to your business.

As with all project risks, the earlier the risk posed by UXO is assessed, the greater the ability to manage and control these risks.

✔ Top tips

  • Remember the risk from UXO within the UK is considered Low Probability, but High Consequence
  • Plan Early; UXO mitigation, if required can take time, but should be proportionate
  • If time / budget allows, conduct the Preliminary UXO assessment yourself to ensure a degree of ownership
  • Clearly define the project site and the processes to be used in the development when instructing a Detailed UXO Risk Assessment
  • If in doubt, question the findings of the assessment
  • Remember risk assessment is a ‘live’ process and requires constant review and amendment whenever new information comes to light - this may alter the required risk mitigation!

× Things to avoid

  • Do not ignore the potential for a UXO risk on your site - health and safety legislation requires you to consider foreseeable risks
  • If you encounter something that you believe to be potential UXO, do not handle, disturb or move it - call a UXO expert

UXO Risk Management Process Flowchart


Ray Gargan_Headshot.png

Ray Gargan

UXO Consultant T: +44 1291 621 821 Email
Chepstow | UK
David Denman

David Denman

EES Technical Director T: +44 1291 621 821 Email
Chepstow | UK

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