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WSD enhances Fresh Water Plumbing Maintenance Recognition Scheme

The Water Supplies Department (WSD) announced today (October 6) that the validity period of the Fresh Water Plumbing Quality Maintenance Recognition Scheme certificates would be lengthened from one year to two years when renewed without break.

A spokesman for the department said that with the endorsement of the Advisory Committee on Quality of Water Supplies (ACQWS), the new arrangements would be implemented with immediate effect.

The spokesman said, “Certificate holders who wish to enjoy the lengthened validity period have to submit their renewal applications not later than three months after the expiry dates of their certificates. They can submit their application as early as three months before the expiry dates.”

“The renewed certificates will be effective from the expiry dates of the last certificates. Renewal applications submitted three months after  the expiry dates will be treated as brand new applications, and the validity period will continue to be one year starting from the new approval dates.  The new arrangements also apply to renewal applications being processed, ” he added.

In addition, the water quality testing requirement for renewal applications without break will be changed to once every two years from the existing frequency of once a year.

Additional requirements have been added to ensure that, when there is a change of building management agent during the validity period of a certificate, the new agent will continue to comply with the requirements under the scheme. 

The spokesman said, “The new agent is now required to submit within one month a prescribed undertaking form to WSD for the certificate to remain valid. The owners or the incorporated owners shall also sign in the application or renewal application forms undertaking to instruct their new management agents to submit the undertaking form.”   

The voluntary scheme was launched in July 2002 to encourage property owners, owners’ corporations and building management agents to carry out regular maintenance of the fresh water plumbing systems of their premises. Under the scheme, fresh water plumbing systems are required to be inspected and confirmed to be in good condition by licensed plumbers or qualified building services surveyors or engineers.

All defects identified in the inspections should be promptly rectified.  The water tanks also need to be cleaned every three months.

As of September 15, a total of 1,587 valid certificates were issued, covering not only residential/commercial buildings, but also hospitals, hotels, schools, universities and public institutions.

Details of the enhanced scheme and application procedures are available on the department’s website http://www.wsd.gov.hk.  Information can also be obtained from the department’s 24-hour enquiry hotline on 2824 5000.

End/Friday, October 6, 2006