8. Jun 2017

Demolition Site Safety

The construction industry deals with many hazards, and the demolition process is like construction in reverse. This presents additional hazards to address. SV Demolition follows the best practices as well as regulations to ensure the highest levels of safety while conducting a demolition in the most efficient manner. The risks inherent in demolition are quickly mitigated by following a well-developed plan, using appropriate personal protective equipment, training workers, and maintaining compliance with OSHA standards.

What is a Demolition?

Demolition is the razing, dismantling, wrecking, or destroying of a structure or building.  Demolition work includes the same hazards as construction; however, demolition has its own set of risks derived from unknown variables. These can include:

  • Changes to the building’s design during the construction process
  • Approved or unapproved alterations or adaptations to the original design
  • Hazardous materials within areas of the building, such as asbestos, lead, silica, beryllium, and other chemicals, or heavy metals that need special handling
  • Unknown weaknesses in the construction materials
  • Hazards caused by unsafe demolition methods

Planning a Safe Demolition

To prevent unsafe working conditions, each member of a demolition team and anyone onsite must be fully instructed on the potential hazards that may be encountered. Safety precautions must be followed by everyone. Planning ahead is the most efficient way to ensure safety. This includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • An engineering survey completed by a professional prior to work commencing. This survey should address the condition of the building and any potential for a collapse.
  • Locating and securing adjacent utilities. If necessary, relocate utilities. Call 811 prior to any digging.
  • Have a detailed fire prevention plan in addition to an evacuation plan
  • Have first aid supplies on hand and identify emergency medical services
  • A thorough assessment of any health hazards prior to any work commencing

Another crucial element to demolition site safety is appropriate protective equipment. Employers are responsible for determining the type of personal protective equipment (PPE) will be necessary, and these may include:

  • Face, eye, hand, foot, and head protection
  • Hearing protection
  • Respiratory protection
  • Personal fall arrest systems (PFAS)
  • Any other protective clothing for use in welding or cutting operations
  • Training for employees on the selection, fitting, use, inspection, storage, and maintenance of the PPE

SV Demolition takes safety of its employees and other individuals onsite at a demolition very seriously. After years of experience, we know that following best practices and regulations adds to the overall effectiveness of an efficient demolition. That means our clients can trust us to ensure that risk mitigation and hazard prevention will translate into lower incidents of injuries, which keeps down costs in addition to protecting employees.

For your next demolition project, contact SV Demolition at 408.218.0993 to learn more about how we can help you with your next project.