Shipyards on stand by


The complete destruction of one of the shipyards in Lai Chi Vun in Coloane village was officially confirmed to Business Daily by the Cultural Affairs Bureau (IC) last Friday.
In a written response to our enquiries, the bureau informed that the shipyard which ‘collapsed completely’ under the strength of typhoon Hato last Wednesday was the one located on the highest ground at Lai Chi Vun.
‘All the other shipyards suffered damage to different degrees, some more severe than the others. However, the basic structures of the majority of the shipyards are still standing,’ the bureau told us.
Last Friday, Business Daily published a story about the collapse of the shipyard and the imminent danger affecting at least two other structures “of falling anytime,” according to information provided to us at that time by the President of the Lai Chi Vun Villagers Association, David Pinto Marques.
According to our source, IC staff had visited the site on the day after Hato hit Macau.
IC also told us that after conducting an initial inspection, the bureau ‘immediately arranged emergency construction works to be performed as soon as possible to prevent further damage,’ with a task force being mobilized on Friday to ‘do the most needed and timely repairs and enforcements.’
The bureau’s actions included first cleaning up the debris and loosened parts of the shipyards, in order to ‘eliminate potential human injuries,’ and then proceeding with the cleaning up of the parts and debris that had fallen on Estrada Lai Chi Vun.
IC also claimed that further inspection of the site would be necessary when ‘conditions and safety are suitable,’ and that it would carry out structural tests and reinforcement works again only when ‘conditions allow and safety guarantees.’
That will now depend on further damage, if any, caused by a second typhoon, Pakhar, which hit the city on this past Saturday night and Sunday morning under signal no. 8.
On Saturday, Business Daily received information from the ground that volunteers were working on the site to clean up the area before the arrival of Pakhar.
Previously, the strengthening of the shipyard structures had been conducted by IC in mid-July when it ‘completed the installation of metal fences around [them] and provided temporary reinforcement of the structures in 10 of them,’ with the purpose of guaranteeing ‘the safety of the villagers’ as well as to ‘prevent the worsening of the facilities,’ IC explained.