Working with Explosives: 4 Things to Consider

Posted on: 29 June 2017

If you are a contractor who needs to use explosives as part of your demolition project, it is important that you take precautions to ensure the safety of your staff and the general public. Below is a guide to 4 things you should consider when using explosives from a place like Rock On Ground.

Choose the right type of explosives

Not every type of explosive is the same. Before ordering your explosives and beginning work, you should consult with your explosives supplier to ensure that you are ordering the correct type. Common types of explosives used as part of demolition works include:

  • Nitroglycerin
  • C4
  • RDX
  • TNT

Using the wrong type of explosives can result in unexpected results which could place people at risk of injury or death.

Calculate the correct position of the explosive charges

You should work closely with a structural engineer in order to establish the correct position for the explosive charges. The engineer will take into account factors such as the direction you wish the structure to fall, the size of the structure and its location in relation to surrounding buildings and roads.

Set up an exclusion zone

Once work begins to lay the explosive charges, you should set up an exclusion zone around the area to protect the local population. Collaborate with the explosives supplier to estimate the radius of the danger zone. If roads need to be closed, you may then need to contact the local authorities so they can alert the police. The exclusion zone should be in operation once explosives are on the site. You should also ensure that any explosives are properly stored and guarded.

Position the explosives

When placing the explosives, all non-essential staff should be removed from the demolition site. The explosives should then be placed using the chart drawn up by the structural engineer. You should work in two teams. The first team is responsible for drilling into supporting structures to insert explosive charges or placing charges around the base of the foundations and supporting walls. A second team should then check that the right type and amount of explosive is being used and that it is in the correct position. Finally, you should place sandbags or barrels of water around the base of the building to limit the chance that debris will be expelled at high speed during the demolition.

If you would like further advice about working with explosives, you should contact a professional explosives supplier today.