Firemen to be stationed at Chek Lap Kok may have a shorter working week than their colleagues. The Fire Services and Civil Aviation departments have proposed four working shifts when the new airport opens in 1988, instead of the three at Kai Tak, to cover 24-hour flights. The 137 staff at Kai Tak now work a 54-hour week, but rescheduling for around-the-clock operations would allow Chek Lap Kok's 306 staff to work 44 hours a week each. However, officers on the new, shorter shifts would have to work more than 54 hours in a week to claim overtime. Fire Services Local Officers' Association chairman Tong Koon-Ngai welcomed the proposal, which has yet to be approved by the Airport Authority and the Economic Services Branch. Airport Fire Commander Augustine Wun Hon-bong outlined improvements planned for the two fire stations being built at the new airport - one for each runway. Firemen will have four airport fire trucks, and two new launches moored at sea rescue stations on the eastern and western shores of the island. The boats will operate in conditions up to a signal eight typhoon. Each would be able to rescue up to 600 people, aided by four high-speed rescue boats at each station. Firemen at Chek Lap Kok will receive elite training, including sessions in an aircraft multi-fire simulator.