AS 2601-2001 The demolition of structures - summary

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Employee / workerEmployer

Demolition work is to be carried out in accordance with Australian Standard AS2601: The demolition of structures (AS 2601). If the work is not covered by or included in AS 2601, the work must be done in a manner acceptable to the WorkSafe Western Australia Commissioner. As compliance with AS 2601 is mandatory, the detail of AS 2601 is not repeated in the Regulations or these Guidelines. However, the content and safety and health issues covered in the AS 2601 are summarised below.

AS 2601 The demolition of structures:

  • sets out requirements for the planned demolition of buildings and certain other structures so that the risk of injury to workers, other site personnel and the public, and the risk of damage to adjacent property and the immediate environment is minimised;
  • covers the methods and safety procedures applicable to demolition work in general as well as procedures for some types of structures;
  • deals with manual and mechanical demolition techniques including those employing specialised earth-moving type machinery;
  • includes informative appendices covering the demolition of pre-stressed concrete structures, some contractual considerations, a checklist for contractors and qualifications for site personnel;
  • safety and health issues are addressed under the headings of:
    • Health and safety of the public - covering general requirements, lighting, falling materials, fencing, hoardings and warning notices, scaffolding, overhead protection for footpaths, and hazardous materials and conditions;
    • Safety and health of site personnel - covering general safety, personal protective clothing and equipment, cutting and welding, fire protection, first aid, amenities, removal of hazardous material and electrical safety;
    • Protection of adjoining buildings and protection of immediate environment - covering requirements relating to access and egress, damage and structural integrity, vibration and concussion, weatherproofing, burning, dust control, noise control, protection of public roads and protection of sewers and water courses; and
  • protection of the site.

AS 2601 is not intended to apply to the demolition of road and railway bridges or of other specialised civil engineering structures such as dams or nuclear reactors. 

The regulations require a copy of AS 2601 to be at every demolition site while demolition work is being carried out, except where the thing to be demolished is a fence or wall less than 1.8 metres in height or a building or structure less than 2 metres in height.

Last updated 12 Jun 2014

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