Old buildings need better management
There have been several accidents in To Kwa Wan. A building collapsed and a deadly fire broke out, which frightened people.
You don't have to wonder why old buildings in To Kwa Wan are so accident-prone. The answer is obvious.
Tenants living in old buildings usually pay low rent and owners do not feel the need to maintain their properties properly. As a result, staircases are often blocked by junk, there is improper fire safety equipment, and many buildings are run-down. Yet no one cares.
The deadly fire in To Kwa Wan was a tragedy. I believe tenants in every building in the area should set up their own council. They should urge owners to take proper care of their buildings and residential units.
Meanwhile, residents should take charge. They should take responsibility for the proper maintenance of fire exits and other safety features in their buildings so as to prevent further tragedies.
Eleanor Wong, Pooi To Middle School
From the Editor
Thank you for your letter, Eleanor. It certainly is one of the darker sides of Hong Kong that many people live in unsafe, overcrowded homes. This is purely the result of the government allowing landlords to do what they please.
Incidentally, the tenants in our infamous cage homes are paying more per square foot for their space than some folks living in luxury homes. The conditions in these places are not something you would expect to find in a city like Hong Kong.