A structural survey is essential before demolition begins

Home / Blog / A structural survey is essential before demolition begins

The demolition sector sees people working in some of the most hazardous environments imaginable. We have a lot of experience with them at Thompsons of Prudhoe. Our ability to maximise safety is one of the reasons we are the best for asbestos removal in the North East.

The health and safety regulations are extensive in our field because there is such a huge number of different risks and hazards to contend with. Several risk assessments are necessary before work begins. In addition action plans need to be put in place and all work needs to be organised with care. This ensures the risk of accidents or injuries is as low as possible.

Surveying the structure

As part of every risk assessment, a full structural survey should be done to help prevent uncontrolled collapses. One of the most dangerous aspects of demolition is the fact that you can set off a chain reaction. If this happens part of or the whole structure could come down too quickly and unsafely. It is therefore essential that you have a full picture of the condition of the property. With this you can plan a safe, structured demolition.

How old is the structure?

With the structural survey there are several things you need to consider and take into account. The age is the first concern because the older the property the more likely that the materials will be weak. It is important to check the materials and test the integrity.

Construction method

As well as the materials you also need to look at the construction methods. Knowing how the property was built will help you to plan the best way to take it down. It will also give you information about which parts are load bearing and need careful management.

Previous use

Learning about the previous use of the property is a good idea because it can shed light on the condition. It will also help you to determine if there are any special steps you need to take or PPE requirements.

Weight

With the survey you can also do some calculations about the weight of material that you will remove and how you can do this safely without compromising the stability of machinery. If you’re going to need equipment above ground level you will need to ensure that floors are strong enough for the load. They must allow people to work safely.

What is nearby?

A final consideration is the proximity to other properties. When the demolition takes place you want to keep the potential for damaging other structures to an absolute minimum.

The information you gather will help you to plan a strategy and create your mission statement. As part of these you need to identify the removal sequence and choose the best way to prevent accidental, uncontrolled collapse.

When we carry out demolition work or asbestos removal in the North East we are always completely safety conscious. We plan all our work meticulously for optimum safety. Contact us today for further information on any of the work that we do.