Incidents spur Ocean Park pledge

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 17 September, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 17 September, 2011, 12:00am


After a series of incidents involving its rides, Ocean Park says it will establish a mechanism to govern reporting details to the public.

The government-owned park is currently required to report important incidents, and the process is governed by detailed guidelines.

But there are no such black and white rules when it comes to informing the public, the park's executive director of engineering, George Tso Chi-keung, said yesterday. 'A series of criteria were laid down regarding the reporting of incidents to the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department, such as the scale of the incident and whether someone was injured or sent to hospital,' he said.

In contrast, whether the park reports to the public depends on vague factors, such as the seriousness of the incident. The park usually tells the media about incidents involving injuries. It was discussing with the department and the Tourism Commission formulating more concrete instructions, Tso said. Details should be announced this month. 'We would like to increase the level of transparency,' he said.

Ocean Park revealed two more incidents, after two others occurred over the weekend.

On August 30, two boats at recently opened ride The Rapids - the first empty and the second loaded with passengers - got stuck at one of the turns of the water course. Three other boats with passengers coming from behind were subsequently stuck. Twenty-seven passengers were on the boats. No one was injured.

More than 50 people were stranded in mid-air on the Ocean Park Tower for 30 minutes on Saturday. On Sunday, a Mine Train roller coaster car with 23 passengers ran into the back of another train at the station. Again, no one was injured.

While the park earlier reported that the train parked at the station had been empty, on Thursday it said the train was being loaded with passengers. Tso apologised and said the error was made by a ride controller. 'He was too nervous at that time and reported the wrong facts,' Tso said.