Sometimes it is necessary to destroy an existing structure before a new one can be created. Especially in cities like New York that have been built up over a number of centuries, demolition work is necessary for development because there is simply no longer any fresh land in the city upon which to build something new.
Demolition crews and demolition work is therefore essential to the city’s growth and evolution. However, this critical work is often extremely dangerous. Because of its important function and because of the hazards associated with this work, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently engaged in efforts aimed at making sure that demolition workers are kept as safe as possible despite the dangerous they face while on the job.
In an effort to prevent demolition-related construction accidents OSHA recently created new training materials and educational resources aimed at promoting safety within the demolition industry. The Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health recently explained the need for heightened safety-related vigilance when he noted that, “Demolition workers face many hazards and their lives should not be sacrificed because of deliberate neglect of demolition fundamentals. Employers must ensure that all workers involved in a demolition project are fully aware of hazards and safety precautions before work begins and as it progresses."
Employers and workers interested in these new resources should consider visiting OSHA’s website for more information. The vast majority of demolition-related accidents are preventable. But both employers and workers must be wholly invested in accident prevention in order to best ensure safety on demolition worksites.
Source: U.S. Department of Labor, “Recent fatalities serve as a reminder to protect workers from demolition hazards,” July 10, 2014