Concrete is incredibly dense and can be difficult to work with. If you are cutting concrete or engaging in demolition work and have concerns about how to safely remove the leftover or excess concrete, then you should consider working with a specialist firm to ensure optimal concrete removal safety. Depending on the kind of work you are doing, there could be a lot of potential concrete removal dangers.
Here are a few tips to help you stay safe when working with concrete.
Avoiding Dangers During Demolition
One of the main reasons why people need concrete removal is when they are engaging in demolition. It is common for concrete contractors to need to engage in demolition work, even if they are not primarily specialised in demolition.
If you need to do demolition work, then check first the structure you want to demolish:
- Look for any unapproved modifications to the building’s original design;
- Look for any changes to the design that may have been made during the initial construction; and
- Check the entire building for unexpected weaknesses or problems that could cause a hazard during the demolition
Once you have finished the demolition work, be sure to clean up the concrete and remove it immediately. Leaving loose concrete lying around can pose a safety threat.
Concrete Removal Costs
Concrete removal can be quite expensive, especially if you have a large amount to remove. Depending on where the concrete is and what state it is in, you can have it removed in large slabs, perhaps to sell on to an architectural reclaimer, or you can break up the concrete into smaller chunks which can be disposed of in a skip or a waste bin.
Small amounts of concrete can be broken up using a sledge hammer or you can use a jackhammer to speed up the work. A 5ft by 5ft area can be broken up with a jack hammer in less than an hour, and is fairly easy to dispose of, but bigger areas will need more time and may need to be removed by a specialist.
Working with Concrete
It is important to note that working with concrete, especially if you are cutting it or breaking it up with a jack hammer, can be very dusty work.
You should always wear appropriate safety equipment, including overalls, sturdy shoes with steel toe caps, gloves, eye protection and a mask or a respirator.
Getting concrete dust in your eyes or inhaling it could be very hazardous to your health. It is common for builders and manual labourers to develop respiratory conditions later in life because of repeated exposure to dust. In addition, skin conditions such as dermatitis can also occur if you allow your skin to get covered in dust on a regular basis.
If you work for a construction company then they will provide you with personal protective equipment. If you are working on your own construction project then you will have to purchase the gear for yourself.
Do not skimp on protective equipment.
It is not worth losing an eye or putting yourself at risk of a lung condition because of something that could have been prevented with the right safety gear. Take concrete removal safety seriously from the moment you start work.
Be aware that concrete breakup and removal is hard work, and it can also be physically demanding. If you are not accustomed to doing manual labour then you may find that removing concrete is too much for you. Instead of trying to take on the job yourself you may want to bring in contractors to handle the job for you.
As you can see, concrete removal safety is a large and complex topic. The above are just a few of the things that you should remember. If you are not confident in your ability to cut out concrete slabs and process them safely then you should definitely consider hiring an expert to do it for you. It may cost several hundred dollars to have work done on a small yard, but it is worth the expense.
A good concrete removal firm can handle the job safely and quickly and ensure that the concrete is removed from the site promptly.