The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the National Demolition Association recently signed a two-year alliance agreement to protect the safety and health of workers in demolition and related industries.
The goal of the alliance is to improve demolition industry safety by providing training and targeting industry-specific hazards. The alliance will focus on developing best practices in power plant demolition and providing agency staff with training on best practices related to deconstructing and dismantling building components for reuse, repurposing, recycling, and waste management.
“Planning for a demolition job is as important as doing the work,” said Acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Jim Frederick. “We look forward to working with the National Demolition Association to help reinforce the importance of making adequate preparations for bringing down a building, training all workers on industry hazards and safety precautions in a language they understand, providing appropriate personal protective equipment, and complying with OSHA standards.”
Demolition work involves many of the hazards associated with construction but includes additional hazards from unknown factors, such as changes or modifications that alter the original design, materials hidden within structural components, and unknown strengths/weaknesses of construction materials, as well as hazards created by the demolition methods used.
The National Demolition Association is a non-profit trade association comprising nearly 400 member companies nationally and internationally. The association provides educational resources on structural demolition and dismantlement, industrial recovery, recycling, architectural salvage decontamination, asbestos abatement, and nuclear clean-up.