Residents of Emerald Court and the societies around it in Sector 93A have been asked to stay indoors for half an hour from 2.15pm on Sunday, when a test blast would be carried out on the twin towers.
Traffic on the approach road will come to a halt, vehicles will be moved out and air conditioners will be turned off during the test blast, which will be conducted at 2.30pm. The test blast would be carried out to ascertain the exact amount of explosives that would be required to bring down the two towers — Apex and Ceyane — next month.
Officials in Edifice Engineering, the company entrusted with the responsibility of demolishing the towers, said an ‘exclusion zone’ had been created to include not just Emerald Court but also ATS Greens Village and other societies for the test blast. This exclusion zone will be guarded by a police team to ensure no one ventures out in the open between 2.15pm and 2.45pm.
The test blast will be carried out in five pillars — four in the basement and one on the 14th floor. Sources said although 10kg of explosives would be needed for the test, it would take at least a week to determine the amount required for the demolition of the two structures.
Edifice has already raised the height of the walls around the twin towers using aluminum sheets to curb the spread of dust and debris during the blast. No vehicles would be allowed on the road outside Emerald Court, but ambulances and fire tenders would be kept ready for any emergency.
BV Raisinghani, a resident of Emerald Court, said an advisory had been pasted on the society’s notice board. “Edifice officials told us that each column would be surrounded by three layers of iron net and three of geotextile fabric. Not just us, residents of Aster 1, 2 and 3 and Aspire 1 have been asked to stay indoors from 2.15pm to 2.45pm. They have been told to switch off ACs and pull out the plug during this period as they will suck in dust. Cars near Aspire 1 will have to be removed between 11am and 3pm,” he added.
Senior officials of Edifice and Jet Demolitions, its Johannesburg-based joint venture partner that has prepared the blast design, will be present during the test blast.
Uttkarsh Mehta, a partner at Edifice, said, “Jet Demolition’s managing director, Joe Brinkmann, and safety head Marthinus Botha will be there. Officials from the Central Building Research Institute (CBRI) will also remain present.”
Solar Explosives of Nagpur will supply the explosives needed for the test. The explosives, sources said, have arrived and have been stored in a magazine in Palwal.
A survey of the nearby buildings, meanwhile, began on Friday to assess cracks and other structural damages to the residential towers. UBS Teotia, president, Emerald Court RWA, said, “Photos and videos of flats, walls, ceilings, balconies and staircases of the nearby towers were taken. They would be used on the day of the demolition to make a comparison.”
Along with Emerald Court, ATS Greens will also be surveyed. An insurance coverage of about Rs 100 crore has been planned for public and private properties near the towers.