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Govt to boost education on building safety

2023-05-30 HKT 16:27
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  • Govt to boost education on building safety
Buildings officials said on Tuesday that it's impossible to check every home in Hong Kong for illegal and dangerous renovation work and they'll instead step up education efforts.

This comes after it emerged that a load-bearing wall was partially removed at a Tseung Kwan O flat, with the authorities alerted to the situation via a video that went viral online.

Concerns have now been raised about the safety of the building in question, The Capitol in LOHAS Park.

Director of Buildings Clarice Yu said people working in the renovation industry should be able to identify load-bearing walls.

“In this industry… I believe even renovation workers cannot say they don’t know it’s a load-bearing wall as it’s thicker and contains more metal components. The best way is to check the approved plans issued by us,” she said.

When asked about how to prevent similar incidents in the future, Yu said officials will step up education efforts to raise awareness of the risks involved in unauthorised building works.

“We have to take a balance in terms of protecting privacy of individual premises, so what we intend to do is to enhance our public education and publicity work,” she said.

Yu sought to allay concerns regarding the safety of the flat in LOHAS Park, saying the wall that was removed only constituted a small percentage of all the load-bearing walls in the building.

The flat owner has been given 30 days to restore the wall, and the authorities will continue to monitor the situation, Yu said.