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Why is demolition one of the most highly regulated industries in the USA?

Knocking down an old building might seem like one of the simplest and most straightforward jobs there is, however, due to a huge range of potential health risks both to demolition workers and the general public around any site, modern industrial demolition is one the US' most tightly regulated industries.


Bringing down a large or small building creates many obvious dangers in terms of falling masonry and structure, but many of our greatest challenges are raised by dealing with the materials that go into buildings and their regular operation such as asbestos, medical waste, wastewater and general hazardous waste.


Every project calls for an understanding of the locally relevant city and state laws, and the drawing up of detailed risk assessments and method statements to ensure a permit will be provided to carry out work such as demolitions, industrial removals or decommissioning.




Expertise and permits required for any US demolition company


Even establishing a demolition business requires state and federal licensing and permits across most of the country, with a range of expectations on demolition companies to have rigorous processes and training in place and various specially qualified members of the team to plan and manage risk, safety and health.


Safe handling and disposal of asbestos is a big part of this requirement, with the dangerous material still found in many buildings. It raises a huge risk for those working on the demolition site, but also for the surrounding area; if any asbestos gets missed it can end up as dust floating across the neighborhood endangering the general public.


There are many other hazardous materials found in buildings, often as a result of the kind of business that has been carried out there in the past. Hazardous materials include many chemicals but also expand to a surprisingly broad range of materials associated with a huge range of industries and business types. Certain types of paint, pesticides, batteries, motor oil, petrol, medicines and even some computer parts can all fall under hazardous waste regulations, requiring careful handling and disposal in accordance with local legal requirements.


Meeting safety and health legislation in commercial and industrial demolition


Once a demolition company has demonstrated it's capability to identify and professionally handle dangerous materials within a building, it must still demonstrate an expertise in occupational safety and health, which includes many demands on the individuals in the demolition teams.


Apprenticeships, qualifications and ongoing training are required throughout the team, starting with the basics of personal protective equipment for everyone on site and going all the way through to detailed risk assessments and hazardous materials identification skills amongst the core project managers.


Demolition includes plenty of falling hazards and the operation of large, heavy machinery on a noisy site; accidents can so easily happen without really skilled and experienced people at every level of a company and site demolition team.



Professional industrial demolition and decommissioning is so much more than just knocking down an old building and clearing up the mess, it takes detailed, expert planning and preparation, careful and observant carrying out of the job, and a highly responsible approach to waste management and disposal.


Make sure your demolition meets the demands of one of the most regulated industries in the US today; speak to us at US Industrial Demolition at any time to get your project started.