Demolition contractors are usually called when a structure reaches the end of its life. The structure may now be unsound and unsafe to inhabit, or a new structure may be taking its place.That's not the only time a demolition contractor is needed, however. In fact, demolition contractors can be a vital part of disaster response teams in many situations.Clearing debris after a tornado, demolishing a building gutted by fire, and a number of other disasters call for the help of demolition experts.Here's one such scenario where a demolition contractor was needed to save lives.In the summer of 2015, a two-level parking garage located near a medical center in New York state collapsed. This created a dangerous situation for a number of reasons. Vehicles were both trapped under rubble, and precariously parked on an unsound structure on the top level. Additionally, it was unknown how many cars were still occupied and how many people may be trapped somewhere in the structure.A demolition contractor was contacted to start work immediately.Because the environment was unsafe for rescue workers to enter due to a threat of further collapse and falling debris, the first task for the demolition crew was to install temporary shoring to stabilize the structure. Not only did this make it safer for rescue crews working to find individuals trapped in the parking garage, but also prevented debris from falling into the IT department located beneath the parking structure's ground floor.Damage to the IT department could result in the shutdown and evacuation of the entire hospital.With shoring installed both in the parking garage and in the IT department, collapsed concrete pieces began to be removed to clear a path for emergency medical personnel.Large machinery was required to move concrete and vehicles, but crews had to be sure not to add any weight to the first floor of the structure and risk further collapse.As the weight of vehicles and concrete was removed, shoring had to be examined and adjusted to ensure it stayed tight. Some rebounding did occur with less weight on the first floor.Eventually, mini-excavators and skid steers were able to enter the parking garage in order to complete the clearing of debris and prepare the structure for controlled demolition.Two weeks after initial work began, the project concluded with no loss of life, and no interruption of service or access to the hospital and emergency room nearby.As illustrated by this project, the unique skills, experience and knowledge of demolition crews are vital in many disaster situations.At Demolition Technologies, we have expansive capabilities to handle any type of demolition project. Contact us at 918-379-0966.