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Safety measures for demolishing asbestos containing materials in public housing estates

     In response to media enquiries on asbestos containing materials (ACM) in Lower Ngau Tau Kok (II) Estate, the Housing Department (HD) today (March 29) issued the following statement:

     HD has well established procedures in handling ACM in its older public housing estates as well as a set of comprehensive safety measures for removal of ACM.

     Lower Ngau Tau Kok (II) Estate is at present under demolition. The ACM in the estate are located mainly in some of the staircases and lobby grilles, roof tiles, and the encapsulated balcony grills inside flats.

     During the demolition process, the demolition contractor is to strictly comply with the relevant ordinances and requirements of the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) in carrying out the ACM removal works, including employment of a registered asbestos specialist.  HD has also appointed an independent asbestos consultant to supervise and monitor the removal works according to the Asbestos Abatement Plan approved by EPD, which stipulates provisions of safety outfits for the workers, the method of containment for the working areas, and procedures in handling the ACM wastes.  In the course of ACM removal, air-monitoring tests have been conducted every working day to ensure health of nearby tenants, the public and the workers are not affected.

     Same as other demolition works of public housing estates, a resident engineer leading a team of site staff has been deployed to closely supervise the demolition works of Lower Ngau Tau Kok (II) Estate.

     As for the allegation in the news report today on the broken grilles in Lower Ngau Tau Kok (II) Estate, HD's independent asbestos consultant has confirmed that the grilles are in stable condition and pose no health hazard. Complete removal of these grilles is anticipated to be completed in April 2011.

     In addition, records of ACM in public rental housing estates have already been uploaded to Housing Authority (HA)/HD website for public inspection years ago.

Ends/Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Issued at HKT 19:35


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