Government determined to enhance construction site safety

In response to media enquiries about the recommendations of the Coroner's Court on a case in which a boy was drowned inside a works site of the Drainage Services Department(DSD) in Pat Heung on September 28 last year, a spokesman for the Development Bureau said today (September 30) that the Government has placed utmost importance on ensuring safety in Government works sites.

The spokesman said that the Development Bureau would carefully study the recommendations and fully implement the proposed measures to ensure safety of both site workers and members of the public.

Immediately following the accident, additional warning signs against trespassing and the risk of falling into water were displayed at all entrances of the concerned site. Patrols by guards in the works site were stepped up by the contractor particularly during Sundays/public holidays.  

DSD also carried out inspections of all the other works sites with deep ponds and channels, and implemented enhanced safety measures with a view to keeping the risks relating to such works to a minimum. Furthermore, DSD has reviewed measures for preventing recurrence of similar incidents and drawn up additional safety guidelines in this regard.

The spokesman pointed out that contractors of public works projects have contractual obligations to keep the works sites in an orderly state to avoid endangering any person and provide all necessary lights, guards, fences, warning signs and watchmen for the protection and security of the work sites.  

"To prevent recurrence of similar incidents, the Development Bureau will request works departments to closely monitor the safety conditions of Government works sites, critically check the security measures including whether hoardings and fences are sufficient to prevent trespassing, particularly by children, and review whether adequate guarding during Sundays and public holidays are provided.

"We will also remind contractors to review their site safety plans, take steps to minimise potential hazards and strengthen their site safety and security measures, including those against trespassing," the spokesman said.

Ends/Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Issued at HKT 20:14