Mercury soars in bus terminals

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 29 July, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 29 July, 2008, 12:00am

District councillors have urged the government to improve air ventilation at bus terminals across the city after a survey found that temperatures inside the terminals can rise above 40 degrees Celsius.

The Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong poll conducted between July 16 and July 18 measured temperatures inside and outside seven bus terminals in Kowloon and the New Territories.

The highest reading, 40 degrees, was registered at a minibus and taxi terminal on Sai Lau Kok Road in Tsuen Wan. The reading inside the terminal was 5.5 degrees higher than the temperature outside it.

Tsuen Wan District councillors Ben Chan Han-pan and Richard Chan Kam-lam said they had received five complaints about poor conditions at the Sai Lau Kok Road terminal.

They inspected the terminal again yesterday, taking a reading of 40.7 degrees.

They said the high temperature was caused by stuffiness inside the depot and called on the Transport Department to improve the ventilation by introducing water scrubbers.

'The department should install better equipment to ventilate the terminals,' Ben Chan said. 'Water scrubbers not only lower the temperature, but also purify the air.'

They also questioned why only a few of the ventilators installed at the depot were turned on, suspecting others had been turned off to save electricity.

A Transport Department spokesman said it would look into the case and see what it could do with other departments, such as the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department, to make improvements.

The other terminals studied were the Nan Fung Centre Bus Terminus, Nina Tower Bus Terminus, Cheung On Bus Terminus, Tuen Mun Central Bus Terminus, Nam Tin Bus Terminus and Tsuen Wan West Terminus.