Contractor involved in building collapse incident at Ma Tau Wai Road prosecuted by Buildings Department and found guilty
The building contractor prosecuted by the Buildings Department (BD) for the offence under section 40(2B)(b) of the Buildings Ordinance (Cap 123) in relation to the collapse of the building at No. 45J Ma Tau Wai Road, To Kwa Wan, Kowloon on January 29, 2010 which led to four fatalities and two injuries was convicted at the Kowloon City Magistrates' Court today (February 20). The sentence hearing has been adjourned to March 6.
The defendant was employed by the owner of the subject building for carrying out repair works and removal of unauthorised building works at the building, but he was not a registered contractor under the Buildings Ordinance (BO). The building collapsed when the defendant was carrying out the above works in the premises. Upon completion of investigation, the BD instigated prosecution against the defendant for carrying out the works in such manner as was likely to cause a risk of injury to the persons or damage to the property concerned.
A spokesman of the BD emphasised that, all building works other than exempted works had to be carried out by prescribed registered contractors.
Under the prevailing section 40(2B)(b) of the BO, any person who carries out any building works in such manner as is likely to cause a risk of injury to any person or damage to any property shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction, in the case of minor works, to a maximum fine of $500,000 and imprisonment for 18 months; and in the case of building works other than minor works, to a maximum fine of $1,000,000 and imprisonment for three years.
The spokesman reminded members of the public that any person intending to carry out building works should consult a building professional before commencing such works. According to the BO, the Minor Works Control System has been fully implemented since December 31, 2010 and general building repair works or removal of unauthorised building works have been designated as minor works. Any person intending to carry out the minor works designated under the BO should employ prescribed building professionals and/or prescribed registered contractors to carry out the works in order to ensure safety and compliance with the law.
Ends/Wednesday, February 20, 2013