Life continues to return to normal in the Ghazaliyah district of Baghdad, as soldiers from the 46th Engineer Combat Battalion (Heavy), 225th Engineer Brigade, spent four days to remove a dilapidated building. The rundown building had become an eyesore and could have become a hiding place for explosives.
"The work continues to improve the living conditions for everyone in this area," said Staff Sgt. Lawrence Willeford. He added that Iraqis tore down two adjacent buildings, and that shows "the Iraqis are already taking the lead in taking care of their own country."
Working at night, security elements blocked off and secured the site, which encompassed a small city block. Once the security element was set, bomb-sniffing dog teams from the combat engineers, military police, and U.S. Marines searched the area for possible explosives. 
Work started with two 30-ton bulldozers knocking down the side walls of the 12-foot tall structure to bring down the building and its four-foot thick concrete roof.  It took the engineers less than an hour to topple the 150-foot long, 20-foot wide building.  Once the building had fallen, bulldozer operators began crushing the sidewalls and roof into smaller, more manageable pieces.  The smaller chunks of rubble were loaded into three 20-ton dump trucks to be hauled to the dump. 
With the building and other large debris and rubble removed, the enemy has one less place to hide explosives.  
"The mission was a team effort by both engineers and our security elements," said Sgt. Nicholas Rogers, a heavy equipment operator team leader. "Together we removed over 120 cubic meters of heavy concrete rubble and twisted metal."