Safety Focus of the Week: Demolition of Existing Utilities (revisited)
Our work frequently involves demolition of existing underground utilities, particularly water, sewer, power, and communication lines. Our duties for these demolition tasks include verification that the line is the correct utility and that it’s ready for demolition (out of service and de-energized). We should always confirm this with our client, the utility owner, and through our own evaluation. We should also notify the utility owner of the demolition schedule to allow for them to be present and, in some cases, we might strongly suggest their presence.
Occasionally, demolition becomes necessary for an apparently abandoned utility that isn’t indicated as such on any contract document. It is typically reasonable for us to assume that engineered drawings showing utilities to be demolished already have some type of approval from the utility owner. Without that implied permission, we need to request permission from the utility owner to demolish their property.
ECI’s Utility Demolition Permit was developed to verify the utility owner’s permission and to establish basic de-energization requirements.
From ECI’s Safety Manual: