Demolition: Construction in Reverse with Additional Hazards

Demolition

Demolition could be dangerous. The hazards of a construction site are well known with thousands of minor injuries, hundreds of serious injuries, and accidental death being a part of the process. The same is true for demolition; the deconstruction of buildings. 

Although it is easier to demolish than construct, the injuries and fatalities that occur on demolition sites can be greatly reduced with the proper planning, training, protective equipment, and compliance with standards set by OSHA. 

The Hazards of Demolition

Demolition involves the same basic hazards as construction with additional factors that make it, in some ways, even more dangerous. These can include things such as:

  • Hidden Hazardous Materials: Asbestos, Heavy Metals, Lead, and more 
  • Unknown Changes or Modifications to the Building Structure 
  • Weaknesses in Construction Materials
  • Hazards of the Methods Used in Demolition 

To ensure maximum safety for all who are involved in demolition efforts, care must be taken right from the start. Helpful actions that can aid in this include:

  • Planning: This begins with a full survey and inspection of the building about to be demolished by a trained, qualified specialist. 
  • Locating Utilities: All nearby utilities need to be located and accounted for in the demolition process. 
  • Safety Protocols: This includes prevention of fire, having first aid and emergency services close by, and an evacuation plan in case the structure is about to collapse. 

All of this must take place before the demolition work begins. It is this type of preparation that can prevent injuries and save lives. 

Protection

All personnel on the demolition site should wear the proper personal protective equipment or PPE. These include:

  • Head, eyes, face, ears, hands, and feet protection
  • Respiratory Equipment
  • Personal Fall Arrest Systems or PFAS
  • Proper Protective Equipment for specialized jobs, such as welding 

Wearing the proper protective gear can help prevent injuries and even save lives. When combined with the right training, this can only improve the safety conditions on-site. 

Of course, accidents can happen even on the safest and most secure demolition sites. So, proper training on how to deal with injuries and having emergency services easily accessible will also help ensure safety. Following OSHA guidelines also assists in protecting employees on the demolition site. This provides guidance in recognizing potentially hazardous conditions and avoiding and removing them from the property. 

How Brickley Environmental Can Help

Brickley Environmental is the one to call to conduct a safe, secure demolition. With over 30 years of experience in the Southern California area,  Brickley Environmental follows all safety protocols,  OSHA regulations,  and engages in the proper planning to ensure that all areas are covered for your demolition project. Call us today to discuss your needs.

For more information, visit OSHA’s website

 

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