Demolition contractors who destroy buildings by implosions are experts who can spend months planning and preparing a building before it’s destroyed. Every tiny detail must be examined and double-checked before the first blasting cap is set. The security, health and safety of the crew, nearby property and spectators is paramount.
A building imploding is a process that destroys a building in seconds that would otherwise take months of work by a large crew. The process involves removing or weakening critical supports and allowing the building to collapse by gravity and its own weight.
Various explosive devices are placed in strategic locations that, when set off, initiate a collapse. Other explosive charges destroy concrete pilings and support. Shaped charges are used to cut steel beams at exact points.
A basic chimney can be set up for an explosion and destroyed in a single day. More complex structures involve months of planning and the placement of explosive charges.
A building imploding is, in fact, a very serious undertaking. Nearby property must be protected, and the safety of spectators is a primary concern. The implosion of the Sears Merchandise Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania drew a crowd of 50,000 curious spectators in 1994. In 1997, a building implosion in Canberra, Australia turned deadly and killed one person and injured eight more people when debris flew into a crowd of spectators. Building implosion videos showing apartment buildings, heating plants, power stations, towers and the Seattle Kingdome imploding are available on the Internet.
A large structure may call for using hundreds of pounds of dynamite and one-hundred or more blasting caps. After a structure comes down, the dangerous work begins for the demolition expert. That person must go into the debris to make certain that it’s safe for the salvage crew to move in. Then the steel is removed and processed for scrap.