HK legislators demand harsher penalties for delta bridge accidents


Hong Kong legislators believe contractors of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge should receive stricter penalties for any occupational fatalities on the construction site, The Standard newspaper reported.
During a Hong Kong Legislative Council panel meeting, legislator Luk Chung-hung cited data that the average penalty imposed on contractors in over 100 industrial accidents that the court has handled was HK$99,000 (US$12,735) whilst that for occupational fatalities was HK$92,000.
“Contractors work on projects worth more than HK$100 million a year. The penalty is like nothing,” Legislator Luk said as quoted by the newspaper.
A recent document released by the Hong Kong Labour Department claims a total of five deaths and 235 injuries occurred on Bridge construction sites between 2011 and the third quarter of 2016.
Legislators attending the panel criticised the government’s supervision of safety measures such as allowing safety belts to be attached to working platforms instead of the Bridge itself, which may lead workers to be dragged into the sea should platforms fall.
Meanwhile, the Hong Kong Commissioner for Labour, Carlson Chan Ka-shun, lamented that death still occurred despite 1,384 onsite checks of the Bridge and 329 prosecutions, although conceding that the injury rate of the project at 22.9 per 1,000 workers was still lower than other developments in the city.