Demolition is the process of dismantling a building or some other structure. To the untrained person, demolition may seem a straightforward thing. However, it’s not simply a matter of breaking down walls and buildings. Several factors have to be considered. That’s where experienced commercial demolition contractors come in. These are professionals that know what it takes to successfully demolish your building while ensuring safety and regulatory standards. Of course, this requires a sound plan.
Key Elements of a Demolition Plan
Before any demolition contractor can take up a job, they need to have a plan for what to do. This is not only for purposes of efficiency; some jurisdictions require that a plan be submitted in advance before any demolition work is carried out.
A typical demolition plan includes the following elements;
This involves the study of the building to be demolished. It also involves studying any surrounding structures. The building to be demolished needs to be assessed thoroughly. This means examining things like;
– The different materials used for its construction
-How old it is
– The presence of toxic or hazardous materials
– Shared utilities like electric poles
– The condition of its drainage system
– The impact of things like dust and noise on the surrounding buildings and community
The demolition contractors will need to examine all such factors in great detail to assess the feasibility and impact of any one demolition method. For example, using explosive charges may be out of the question if the building to be demolished is in a busy neighborhood or the middle of a business district.
2) Removal of Hazardous Materials
Many buildings, especially those that are decades old, may have trace elements of asbestos in their structures. This fact may only become noticeable after a thorough building survey before demolition. A demolition plan needs to account for such materials and how to get rid of them safely. This may require the services of a remediation company.
3) Technical Plans
These lay out the actual activities involved in dismantling the building, from the first step to the last. They’ll also outline all the crucial structural support of the building, its distance from neighboring roads, proximity to other buildings, waste management plans, and any other measures to ensure the safety of the public. Every little detail has to be laid out. This ensures that major problems can be anticipated upfront so that the necessary countermeasures can be put in place.
4) Safety Measures
Safety protocols have to be laid out. Even though safety at demolition sites is part of the training for such contractors, it still needs to be laid out for each project. This ensures that nothing is missed. Before the actual demolition begins, all workers on the site will need to be briefed about all safety measures and what to do in cases of emergencies. For example, there need to be protocols in case of an inadvertent fire outbreak or a section of a wall collapsing before it is intended to.
The common methods of building demolition include using explosive and non-explosive methods. Usually, a combination of both is used. This is because certain things have to be removed from a building even when using explosives is the preferred method. Things like elevators, air conditioning systems, heating systems, suspended ceilings, and more have to be manually removed before the demolition can begin.
The Need for a Demolition Plan
If you are ever considering demolition work, having a plan in place is essential.
Firstly, having a demolition plan will help you to identify the time scale of the project. While such a plan is required for every job, it is especially important for large demolition projects. For a contractor undertaking a large demolition job, such a project is usually broken down into smaller tasks. For example, the demolition contractor may need to bring in third parties like remediation companies. This is especially the case for buildings whose surfaces have toxic materials like asbestos. A demolition plan helps to lay out each phase of the project. This ensures that things are kept on schedule. With a plan, the demolition contractor will know where the issue is if the project is lagging.
Secondly, having a demolition plan may be a requirement by the authorities. Given that you need a permit before proceeding with any demolition work, some municipal authorities may require such a plan as part of your permit application. Also, having such a plan protects you legally in case of injuries and deaths on the demolition site.
Ultimately, a demolition plan is there to ensure a safe and convenient dismantling process.