Skip links and keyboard navigation

Queensland Government site header

Demolition

Demolition work means work to demolish or dismantle a structure, or part of a structure that is load-bearing or otherwise related to the physical integrity of the structure, but does not include —

  1. the dismantling of formwork, falsework, or other structures designed or used to provide support, access or containment during construction work; or
  2. the removal of power, light or telecommunication poles.

Definition as per Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011 (the Regulation), Schedule 19 – Dictionary.

Examples of hazards

Demolition work involves controlling exposure to hazards such as:

  • falling objects, including part or all of a structure or debris
  • being struck or crushed by an operating mobile plant
  • airborne contaminants, such as asbestos or silica.

Demolition notification

You should notify WHSQ at least five days before commencing demolition:

  • of a structure or part of a structure that is load bearing or otherwise related to the physical integrity of the structure (only if 6 m or higher in height)
  • involving load shifting machinery on a suspended floor
  • involving explosives.

The Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011 (WHS Regulation) provides more information on demolition notifications.

Other requirements in the WHS Regulation may apply to the demolition or dismantling of a structure.

Asbestos and demolition

There  are additional requirements where demolition of a structure that contains  asbestos materials is to occur.

Find out more about asbestos and demolition of a domestic structure.

What laws apply

The WHS Regulation requires that a demolition work licence be held by a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU).

The WHS Regulation, Part 4.6 Demolition work is summarised below.

Specific legislative requirements for demolition work

Notice of demolition work

A person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) that proposes to carry out any of the following types of demolition work must provide written notice to Workplace Health and Safety Queensland at least 5 days before the work commences:

  • demolition work relating to a structure or part of a structure that is at least 6 metres in height
  • demolition work involving load-shifting machinery on a suspended floor
  • demolition work involving explosives

Notice must be made using Form 65: Notification of licensed asbestos removal work, demolition work or emergency demolition.

WHS Regulation 2011, s142(1) and (2)

Notice of demolition work by an emergency service organisation

Emergency service organisations must give notice of any notifiable demolition work (see s142(1)) as soon as is practicable, whether before or after the work is carried out, when the demolition work is carried out while rescuing or providing first aid to a person.

Notice must be made using Form 65: Notification of licensed asbestos removal work, demolition work or emergency demolition

WHS Regulation 2011, s142(2), (3) and (4)

Licence to carry out demolition work

A PCBU must not carry out demolition work, or allow or direct a worker to carry out demolition work, unless they are licensed to carry out that work.

View information about obtaining a demolition work licence

WHS Regulation 2011, s143

Nominated competent person must be present or readily available

The person nominated under a demolition licence to supervise the work must be readily available to any worker carrying out the demolition work

WHS Regulation 2011, s144(1)

Training for workers

The PCBU holding a licence to carry out demolition work must provide appropriate training to workers to ensure that the demolition work is carried out safely and competently

WHS Regulation 2011, s144(2)

Construction work

Demolition work is considered construction work under the WHS Regulation and must be carried out in accordance with the relevant regulations

WHS Regulation 2011 – Chapter 6 – Construction Work

Safe work method statements

Safe work method statements are required for all high risk construction work, including any construction work that involves the demolition of an element of a structure that is load-bearing or otherwise related to the physical integrity of a structure

WHS Regulation 2011, s291 and s299

Notifiable incidents

The collapse or partial collapse of a structure is a dangerous incident and must be notified to Workplace Health and Safety Queensland.

View additional information about the notification of dangerous incidents, including the notification form

Work Health and Safety Act 2011, s35, s36, s37, s38 and s39

Last updated
02 May 2017

Register today for the Injury Prevention and Return to Work conference

The conference will explore future workplace trends and how they impact on safety and return to work.

Read more...

Register today for the Injury Prevention and Return to Work conference

There's nothing like getting back for getting better

Workers who get back to safe work as soon as possible recover more quickly than those who wait until they are fully recovered.

Read more...

There's nothing like getting back for getting better