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Video – Mighty Marysville plant falls…

Michigan power plant reduced to rubble.

The ‘Mighty Marysville’ power plant, which provided electricity for more than 70 years until being decommissioned in 2011, was reduced to rubble and a huge cloud of dust.

The cleared site will be used to build riverside shops, flats and a hotel.

DTE Marysville Implosion from Motor City Drone Co. on Vimeo.

Video – The height of Koole…

Dutch contractor demonstrates pulling power.

Given that a large proportion of the world’s demolition contractors will be turning to face Amsterdam today, this video is nothing if not timely.

Check out Dutch contractor Koole (surely the greatest name in the demolition firmament) pull down an industrial structure at Leylstad.

Video – NOT The World Demolition Awards 2015…

While the industry is in Amsterdam looking the other way, here’s something for the rest of us.

I will be totally honest, I have thought long and hard about uploading this tongue-in-cheek video even though it took a long while to shoot and edit.

The real Demolition Awards – which take place in Amsterdam later today – have evolved into something to which the industry aspires and some of my closest friends in the industry are up for an award.

That said, the thought of leaving the likes of Meryl Streep, Leonardo Dicaprio and (scariest of all) Tommy Lee Jones on the cutting room floor was ultimately something I just couldn’t face. And so, while part of the industry is looking the other way, here is our star-studded NOT The World Demolition Awards 2015.

Bay Bridge blast bumped…

“Explosive packaging” cited in implosion delay.

Caltrans’ much-touted plan to implode the largest concrete pier of the old Bay Bridge eastern span has been delayed a week until Nov. 14 because of packaging problems with the dynamite needed to destroy the structure, agency officials said Tuesday.

The chief engineer of the eastern span construction project, Brian Maroney, said officials decided to delay the implosion after determining that the packaging material holding hundreds of dynamite charges was not strong enough and could fall apart, possibly preventing the explosion from being powerful enough to destroy the almost 8-decade-old pier.

“It wouldn’t work as planned,” Maroney said.

Caltrans plans to install 20,000 pounds of explosives in charges weighing 20 to 35 pounds apiece throughout the 80-by-140-foot pier at the western end of what remains of the old span.

Read more here.

J. Bryan on recruitment drive…

Leading North West contractor seeks experienced workers.

Cheshire-based J. Bryan (Victoria) Ltd, one of the leading demolition contractors in the North West of England, is in full recruitment mode to help it meet a continued upsurge in demand.

The Widnes company, which specialises in complex dismantling projects including petrochemical and power station demolition, is seeking experienced staff in a multitude of key disciplines including:

• CCDO Gold Card supervisors
• Machine operatives
• Contracts Managers with health and safety experience

To apply, please send your CV to enquiries@jbryan.co.uk

Video – Beattie breaks B800 bridge…

Stunning time-lapse captures weekend bridge removal.

The first of three weekend operations to demolish the old B800 Bridge in South Queensferry, Scotland.

The B800 has already been diverted on to a brand new bridge, seen in the background here.

The operation to break up the old reinforced concrete is challenging and required complete closure of the A90 overnight on Saturday October 24th and throughout Sunday October 25th and two further weekend

Union decries prosecution delays…

Eight years of prolonged suffering for family of man killed in 777 accident.

As we reported yesterday, an electrician, working on a demolition site in Elephant and Castle in south London was killed in August 2007 when falling concrete joists crushed him to death. Only now – in November 2015 – has his employer been made to admit negligence.

UCATT the construction union asks – how does Britain allow the bereaved families of workers – who suffer the totally unnecessary and negligent death of a love one – to be plunged into an eight year legal nightmare?

UCATT Acting General Secretary, Brian Rye, said: “Spare a thought for the family of electrician John Walker who was not only taken from them by workplace negligence but who have then had to endure almost a decade of legal proceedings before blame was finally assigned. This was not a public enquiry into a war, a plane crash or a complicated corporate legal case. One man died on London’s Walworth Road and yet it took long eight years to assign cause and blame.”

Employer 777 Demolition & Haulage and sister firm 777 Environmental were found guilty at Southwark Crown Court on November 2 of breaching health and safety regulations by failing to investigate the nature of the structure, which led to an uncontrolled collapse. Together the companies were fined £215,000 and had to pay additional legal costs of £168,000 to the Health and Safety Executive.

Rye added: “Shame on this employer and shame on all of us for allowing families to be put through such hell. There is no justifiable reason why a case like this should not be resolved quickly. This is a tawdry saga that has wasted time and money, and only served to exacerbate the deep, deep pain and loss felt by a family. We say to the Health and Safety Executive and all the other bodies involved in these cases– this should not happen again.”

Fat of the land…

New report throws spotlight on an industry of over-eaters.

New research by trade insurance specialist’s construcaquote.com has revealed that the average British construction worker will eat upwards of 1,500 calories more than the recommended daily intake. Despite this revelation, less than one fifth of workers polled considered themselves to be at all overweight.

As part of its ongoing research into insights and trends surrounding the construction industry, a constructatquote.com has investigated the eating habits and diets of a group of British construction workers, to look into how healthy they are compared to those with more stationary and less active jobs.

Researchers at constructaquote.com polled a total of 2,193 male UK construction workers, all of whom were aged 18 or over. In order to keep the results as unbiased as possible, those taking part in the research were spread equally amongst each of the different UK regions.

Respondents were initially asked to consider how much food they eat during a typical working day, and asked to estimate how many calories it was likely to add up to. The average answer was 4,050 calories, 1,500 more than the recommended daily amount for a man.

When asked to select the most common meals they ate during a normal working day from an extensive list of different foods, the most popular answers were:

1. Breakfast baguettes (bacon, sausage, egg etc) – (64%)
2. Meat pie/pasties – (51%)
3. Burger and chips- (48%)
4. English fry-up- (35%)
5. Fried chicken – (33%)

By comparison, only 17% said that ‘sandwiches’ were among the most common meals they eat while at work, with only 4% regularly eating salads.

When asked if they believed that they regularly ate unhealthily during their working hours, the vast majority of respondents (71%) agreed that this was the case, with more than half of these participants (51%) revealing that this was as a result of ‘not being able to access healthy food options’, and a further 22% confessing they were ‘lazy’ with their diets.

Interestingly, when asked if they were classed as overweight for their height and build, less than one fifth of participants (19%) admitted to being on the heavy side despite eating a seemingly unhealthy amount of food each day, with the majority classing themselves as either healthy or underweight.

Lyndon Wood, CEO and Founder of constructaquote.com, had the following to say about the findings of the study:

“4,000 calories a day is ok for manual workers but this largely depends on what it is they are eating. Quick sugar fixes or proper plant based foods with plenty of fibre? Plenty of vegetable and some fruit is well recommended. Gone are the days of big hairy assed builders!”

Breaking News – NFDC vice president resigns…

Andrew Forshaw quits, prompting unprecedented election.

DemolitionNews understands that the National Federation of Demolition Contractors has accepted the resignation of vice president Andrew Forshaw of Walter Forshaw Ltd.

Under the NFDC rules of succession, this unprecedented move potentially leaves a presidential void after the reign of incumbent president – Martin Wilson – comes to an end. And it is a void that could easily become protracted. The role of NFDC president is demanding and the number of individuals with the company support structure to allow them to tend to regular Federation work is extremely limited.

Furthermore, the traditional route to president requires spells as regional chairman, second vice president and vice president.

The reasons behind Forshaw’s shock decision remain shrouded in mystery, but an announcement from the NFDC is expected shortly.

Cuddy Group bags Oceana contract…

Demolition of Swansea’s former Oceana nightclub building will start towards the end of November.

Swansea Council has now appointed Cuddy Group to lead the project, which should be finished by the end of May next year.

The council completed the purchase of the 0.55-acre site in September as the first step of a plan aimed at transforming Kingsway into a business district. The building, originally constructed by the Rank Organisation in 1967 for a cinema, has accommodated a number of bars and nightclubs over the years, including Ritzy and Icon, Time and Envy, and, most recently, Oceana.

Only work inside the property will take place in the build-up to Christmas, so there’ll be no impact on festive trade in the area. All the building’s fixtures and fittings will be stripped-out and removed for recycling or re-use, wherever possible.

The demolition is being funded by the Welsh Government’s Vibrant and Viable Places Swansea City Centre regeneration programme that was awarded in June, 2014.

Vibrant and Viable Places (VVP) is a three-year programme (2014-2017) through which Swansea Council has been awarded £8.53 million to target key regeneration projects in the city centre.

Read more here.

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