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Lifts and Escalators Ordinance to come into full operation tomorrow (with photos)

The Lifts and Escalators Ordinance will come into full operation tomorrow (December 17) to replace the existing Lifts and Escalators (Safety) Ordinance, marking a key milestone in the regulatory development of lift and escalator safety in Hong Kong.

Officiating at the Lifts and Escalators Ordinance Launching Ceremony at Zero Carbon Building in Kowloon Bay today (December 16), the Secretary for Development, Mr Paul Chan, said, "The full operation of the Ordinance further enhances the safety of lifts and escalators in the territory. The Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) will strictly enforce the Ordinance and continue to provide assistance to building owners and offer public education. All of us should also place an effort on assuring the public on the safe and comfortable use of lifts and escalators."

The Lifts and Escalators Ordinance will enhance the regulatory control over lifts and escalators in various aspects, including:

1) Introducing a workers registration system whereby workers may apply for registration as lift/escalator workers based on their qualifications in order to ensure they are equipped with the required qualities;

2) Raising the registration requirements for lift/escalator engineers to be on par with those required for professional engineers under other pieces of legislation for building safety control;

3) Stating clearly the registration requirements for lift/escalator contractors and introducing a registration renewal system to ensure the contractors' consistent compliance with the Ordinance;

4) Increasing the maximum fine for certain offences under the Ordinance from $10,000 to $200,000 to achieve greater punitive and deterrent effects;

5) Extending the responsibilities of the owner of a lift or escalator to cover any other persons who manage or control the lift or escalator; and

6) Introducing a series of measures to enhance operational efficiency and enforcement effectiveness, including issuance of a new use permit that features simplicity and clarity to facilitate surveillance by the users. In the coming year, the new permits will gradually replace the existing safety certificates displayed in conspicuous positions at lifts and escalators.

To deepen the understanding of the general public and industry stakeholders on the Lifts and Escalators Ordinance, the EMSD has been organising a series of publicity activities since the enactment of the Lifts and Escalators Ordinance in April this year. These have included promoting the major statutory requirements through television and radio announcements, posters and leaflets, as well as conducting seminars and talks for the public and industry practitioners. The EMSD has also issued codes of practice and responsible persons' guidebooks for providing guidance to the trade and the responsible persons for lifts/escalators respectively.

For details of the Lifts and Escalators Ordinance, please visit the EMSD website (www.emsd.gov.hk).

Attachment:

Ends/Sunday, December 16, 2012
Issued at HKT 17:09

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