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Renovation contractors of HKU and Taikoo Place projects convicted for illegally carrying out works on public holiday
     Two contractors of the renovation works for the Hui Oi Chow Science Building at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) and Dorset House in Taikoo Place, which illegally carried out construction works on a public holiday and generated noise nuisance, were fined $8,000 and $5,000 respectively by Eastern Magistrates' Courts today (December 18) for contravening the Noise Control Ordinance (NCO).

     During a blitz operation conducted on a Sunday this May, Environmental Protection Department (EPD) staff found that renovation workers used powered mechanical equipment to carry out construction works and generated noise nuisance at the two places. One of the contractors was also found to be handling debris. Both of the contractors did not hold a valid construction noise permit (CNP). Upon investigation and evidence gathering, the EPD initiated prosecution against the two contractors under the NCO. In addition, the EPD has written to HKU and the managing company of Taikoo Place requesting them to take effective measures to ensure that all the renovation works are conducted legally.

     According to the NCO, anyone who uses powered mechanical equipment for construction works or carries out prescribed construction works (such as handling debris or hammering) in a designated area during restricted hours (between 7pm and 7am the next day on weekdays or any time on a public holiday) commits an offence. First-time offenders are liable to a maximum fine of $100,000. A maximum fine of $200,000 may be imposed on second or subsequent convictions.

     The NCO aims to protect the public from disturbance of rest and to minimise noise nuisance. The EPD spokesman stressed that construction contractors should schedule works for the daytime and non-general holidays as far as possible. If the construction work has to be conducted during the restricted hours, the contractor has to obtain prior approval from the EPD. The construction works shall commence only when the CNP has been granted upon completion of assessment to support that its noise level would comply with regulatory requirements. Contractors must also implement noise mitigation measures, such as installing enclosures and using low-noise powered mechanical equipment to minimise noise nuisance.
Ends/Monday, December 18, 2017
Issued at HKT 15:30
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