Planning for a demolition project is just as important as actually doing the work. According to Cal/OSHA, a qualified person experienced in all phases of the demolition should conduct the demolition planning.

Consider the following when planning any demolition project:

  • The planning methods that will be used to bring the structure down.
  • The necessary equipment to do the job.
  • Proper permits and public utility notifications.

Prior to the start of a demolition project

The engineer must complete a written survey to determine if there are any hazardous substances in the structure and asses the condition of the floors, walls, and framing to prevent a premature collapse. The completed survey must be kept on the job-site and made available upon request.

The demolition contractor is responsible for planning the wreckage of the structure, the equipment to do the work, informing worker of hazards and safety requirements, and public safety. Planning should include necessary safety equipment such as:

  • Specific respirators for the job.
  • Hearing protection.
  • Safety nets, lifelines, and fall protection.
  • Warning signs.
  • Eye and face protection.
  • Sidewalk sheds or canopies at all entrances.
  • Water to keep material or debris wet to prevent dust from rising.

Emergency preparation 

Workers should also know how to respond to possible emergencies. Emergency procedures should be devised, explained, and posted. Make sure to name all the local medical or emergency responding facilities and post it in a readily accessible location with phone numbers and addresses. Post all first aid and CPR equipment with the names of on-site certified individuals.

The demolition area should be clearly marked as such to ensure that only authorized personnel are within restricted areas of the site. All site workers or authorized personnel should be dressed in appropriate personal protective wear and be informed of safety practices and emergency procedures.

For additional information on this topic, visit the Federal Occupational Safety & Health Administration’s (Fed/OSHA) section on demolition.

The above evaluations and/or recommendations are for general guidance only and should not be relied upon for medical advice or legal compliance purposes. They are based solely on the information provided to us and relate only to those conditions specifically discussed. We do not make any warranty, expressed or implied, that your workplace is safe or healthful or that it complies with all laws, regulations, or standards.