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Jobs – Join the Bridge Busters…

Armac Group is looking to fill two key roles as part of expansion process.

Solihull-based Armac Group, one of the UK’s most-respected demolition companies and a recognised leader in the field of bridge demolition, is seeking to enhance its performance with two key appointments.

The company is actively seeking two experienced industry professionals to fill a pair of key roles:

Further details on these exciting vacancies can be found by clicking the appropriate link (above).

For a full list of current jobs, please visit our sister website,

Video – JCB dismantles its own history to create legacy…

JCB excavators move in to destroy former company factory.

The redevelopment of a former JCB factory site in the centre of Uttoxeter has taken another big leap forwards with work now underway to break up more than 34,000 tonnes of concrete. The Pinfold Street site was home to manufacturing for almost 140 years, firstly for agricultural machinery makers Bamfords Ltd and latterly for JCB Heavy Products, which relocated to a new £40 million facility next to the A50 in Uttoxeter in 2008.

Now a fleet of JCB machines has moved on to the site to break up the concrete bases which the factory stood on and to remove the old foundations which are up to six feet deep. The concrete is up to a foot deep in parts and is being removed and recycled for use on site as part of a 12 week contract awarded to Willenhall-based Dismantling & Engineering Services Ltd.

JCB Chairman Lord Bamford is taking a personal involvement in the plans for the site and instigated a Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) design contest to ensure the redevelopment is of “the highest possible standard” and leaves a legacy for Uttoxeter.

Today he said: “The breaking up of the concrete on the site is a big step forward for the redevelopment project as it will pave the way for the creation of a wonderful park for Uttoxeter and for more than 250 very high quality homes.”

The heavyweight JCB machines tasked with the job are a 36 tonne JS360, 29 tonne JS290 and two 22 tonne JS220 tracked excavators – all made by JCB Heavy Products. One of the JS220 machines is equipped with a heavy-duty JCB HM1570Q Hammermaster breaker.
Dismantling & Engineering Services Ltd was established in 1994 and is one of the leading companies in the West Midlands specialising in demolition and industrial dismantling of all types of buildings and structures.

Managing Director Stewart Harper said: “There is a huge volume of concrete to be broken up over the next 12 weeks but we don’t anticipate any major challenges with the project by the time it is completed in June. The four JCB JS excavators we have on site are very powerful and making easy work of the job we have to do.”

Comment – Rewarding the true innovators…

PlantworX Awards sees demolition representation on both sides of the fence.

Yesterday, the great and the good of the construction and demolition equipment industry gathered at The Gherkin in London to celebrate the winners of the 2015 PlantworX Awards for Innovation.

I was honoured to have been selected as the chairman of the judging panel and I had assembled a crack team of judges from across the industry spectrum including two notable representatives from the demolition sector: Austin Wilkinson from AW Demolition to give an operator’s perspective; and Rich Holt of Fabrications by Design to give us his insight into how the machines were put together.

The winners (below) were as diverse as they were innovative and it was pleasing to note that a good proportion of the winners and the highly commended were relatively small, specialist companies embracing technology to enhance a process or procedure. It was great to see demolition-related equipment (including several that we have championed here on among the winners. And it was most pleasing of all knowing that each of the winners had been selected by a truly independent panel with no political or financial axe to grind. The winners were, therefore, thoroughly deserving.

We have listed all the winners below and highlighted the demolition-related products in bold.

Highly Commended – Elite GSS
• Winner – International Powered Access Federation (IPAF)

Highly Commended – JCB Inteli-Hybrid generator
Winner – Wacker Neuson 803 mini excavator

• Highly Commended – International Powered Access Federation (IPAF)
Winner – Datatag Venom

Highly Commended – Worsley Plant Lehnhoff quick coupler
Winner – JCB Inteli-Hybrid Generator

• Highly Commended – Western Global AdBlue fuel bowser
• Winner – Komatsu PC210i-10 excavator

Elite Awards
• Bronze – Wacker Neuson 803 mini excavator.
• Silver – International Powered Access Federation (IPAF)
• Gold – Datatag Venom

Our hearty congratulations to all the winners.


Wall falls onto Philly street…

Portion of wall crashed to the ground taking down a street light as contractor oversaw “controlled demolition”.

The city’s Department of Licenses and Inspection confirmed Monday that the contractor was demolishing the front wall near the 1100 block of Market Street when the collapse occurred.

The street light collapsed onto a barrier around Market Street, scattering debris onto the sidewalk.

The contractor described the wall as “very unstable” and took the required safety precautions to ensure public safety by closing off Market Street during the demolition. an L & I spokesman said.

Read more here.

Video – Where old meets new…

Drone captures never-seen-before footage of wrecking ball in action.

Wrecking balls videos are like London buses it seems; you wait an age for one to come along and then two arrive together.

This one is a bit different, however. Here in the UK, it’s fair to say that no wrecking balls has been used in anger for the best part of two decades, a period in which unmanned drones were the stuff of science fiction.

And yet here we are with a drone getting up close and personal with a wrecking ball in a video that uses new technology to capture old technology doing what it does best.

Video – Two balls are better than one…

Twin wrecking balls tackle German demolition.

Call me a purist, but to my mind there’s only one thing better than a well-aimed wrecking ball; and that’s two well-aimed wrecking balls.

So for those of you who, like me, are of a certain vintage and still hanker quietly for the days of old, this video is for you. And if you’re a young whipper-snapper who has never seen a crawler crane and wrecking ball in action for yourself, trust me, you don’t know what you missed!

Art installation highlights asbestos plight…

Hard-hitting display highlights dangers of deadly fibres.

UNP Kindred 33130 Asbestos Awareness Campaign034Scores of heart-wrenching messages, written by people who have lost husbands, wives, fathers and children to asbestos-related diseases, are at the centre of a hard-hitting public art installation aimed at highlighting the dangers of exposure to the deadly fibres.

Artist Joe Joiner, whose own great-grandmother died after being exposed to asbestos, has been working with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to create Dust To Dust – an interactive installation unveiled today in the gardens of St Paul’s Church in Covent Garden to honour the thousands of people who die every year after coming into contact with the killer substance.

More than 50 grieving family members have added their own personal messages to the piece, created as part of HSE’s Beware Asbestos campaign. The artwork is made up of two huge glass boxes, inside which the messages float around representing a breathing pair of lungs. The messages themselves symbolise the microscopic asbestos fibres that can be unknowingly breathed in if tradespeople do not take the right safety measures to protect themselves. These fibres can prove lethal causing deadly diseases such as mesothelioma, an aggressive form of lung cancer.

Lauren Ross, whose husband Frank, a retired shop fitter from Manchester, died in 2007 just a few months after being diagnosed with mesothelioma, wrote in her message: “My heart breaks at each new birth and achievement of our children that you can’t share. Losing you and your love hurts every day.”

She added: “What really upset Frank was the fact that he must have been bringing asbestos into our house for years, potentially affecting me and our four children. This was something he had absolutely no idea about.”

Mrs Ross and several other contributors have travelled across the country to attend the launch of this living, breathing memorial. As well as reading the notes written by bereaved family members, passers-by can also add their own tributes to the artwork, which will be on display for two days.

Creator of the artwork Joe Joiner, whose great-grandmother was exposed to asbestos while working in a factory, said:

“At first I was unaware as to the widespread effects of asbestos and the impact it has on tradespeople, I assumed it was a last-century phenomenon. Only when I started to talk to friends and family about the artwork did more and more instances make themselves known to me – some closer than first thought. The fact so many workers are being affected by this fibrous assassin is a real problem and needs to be prevented.”

Joe is an award-winning artist and graphic designer from East London who has created a broad range of inspirational schemes for high profile brands including Nike. His first hand experience of the devastation asbestos can inflict on families has prompted him to take action in warning others of the dangers.

Adam Hills, HSE inspector, said: “Asbestos is a very real danger to tradespeople today. In fact, 20 tradespeople on average die every week from asbestos related diseases. This artwork is testament to the devastating impact this deadly substance has on families everywhere and illustrates that it is more important than ever to ensure workers take the simple steps that will help to keep them safe.”

The HSE has created a free web app for phones, tablets and laptops that helps tradespeople easily identify where they could come into contact with the deadly material and gives them tailored help on how to deal with the risks. To get the web app please visit

Video – Mattress stack takes long lie down…

Crews push over stack that had stood sentry at Lockland mattress company.

The smoke stack from the former Stearns and Foster Mattress Company in Lockland came down at noon yesterday.

The smokestack has been a symbol of Lockland for many years. It’s the last piece of several buildings abandoned years ago.

The hope was that removing the smokestack will be a sign of progress for the village.

“It’s more than an eyesore. The building was literally falling down,” Village Administrator David Krings said.

The Ohio Department of Transportation is working on Interstate 75 in the area. It didn’t take much convincing by the village to have ODOT include the stack’s demolition in its project.

“ODOT, who’s financing the demolition, said they don’t want that kind of structure next to a major highway that’s being widened. It was just too dangerous,” Krings said.

Read more here or view video below:

Bomb discovery sparks evacuation…

2,000 Bermondsey homes evacuated and Tower Bridge closed after WWII ordnance unearthed.

Industry news portal Construction Enquirer is reporting that Crawley-based demolition contractor Matthews has uncovered an unexploded 1,000 lb World War Two bomb on a south London building site near the Shard.

A digger driver raised the alert triggering a widespread evacuation of over 2,000 homes and closure of Tower Bridge.

The unexploded bomb, which is 5 ft long, was uncovered yesterday during demolition of buildings in Bermondsey at the former site of the Southwark Irish Pensioners Centre to make way for a 7-storey residential scheme.

Police have sealed off the area bringing widespread transport disruption, and scores of people were forced to sleep overnight in a nearby leisure centre and several rest camps

Bomb disposal experts said they are aiming to make the bomb safe this morning.

Read more here.

Video – Long Island bridge blasted…

First of series of implosions fells part of span.

A large section of the Long Island Bridge was demolished Monday as contractors imploded a 750-foot-long piece that connects to the island, officials said.

The Coast Guard had set up a 1,000-yard safety zone between Moon Island and Long Island, and marine units from State, Boston, and Quincy police were on the scene to steer boaters away from the area, officials said.

The demolition targeted three sections of the bridge — sections 12, 13, and 14 — each of them 250 feet long, according to Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh’s office.

Part of the ailing bridge was already removed in late February.

Read more here, or view the video below:

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