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Experts demolish 300-metre power station chimney in Germany

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dpa German Press Agency
Published: Sunday December 3, 2006

Gelsenkirchen, Germany- Watched by a big crowd, experts in Germany neatly demolished a 300-metre-high power-station chimney Sunday with just two strategically placed charges of explosive. The 80 kilograms of chemicals were placed in such a way that the bottom section of the 20,000-ton ferro-concrete chimney leaned a little to the right and collapsed, making room for the top section to thunder straight to the ground in a huge heap of dust.

The utility E.ON has hired contractors to demolish the entire Westerholt power station in the western German town of Gelsenkirchen so it can be redeveloped as a housing estate with a park in it.

Onlookers, who were kept 500 metres away during the operation, saw two puffs of smoke, 54 and 183 metres above the ground, and then the chimney neatly collapsed onto its base. Fire crews sprayed water on the rubble to stop dust spreading.

© 2006 dpa German Press Agency