Lifts similar to one in 14-floor plunge cleared

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 18 November, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 18 November, 2008, 12:00am

All of the lifts similar to the one that fell 14 floors in a public housing estate last month were found to be safe, the government said yesterday.

The Electrical and Mechanical Services Department said it had inspected all of the 517 lifts in the city made by Kone Elevator. The lifts were mostly installed in private buildings and public housing estates, the department said.

An empty Kone lift plunged 14 floors in Shin Nga House, Fu Shin Estate, Tai Po, on October 25, raising public concerns over the brand's safety. The company had managed maintenance on the lift until July, when ThyssenKrupp Elevator took over.

The department said results of an inquiry into the cause of the accident were expected by early next month.

It was the worst of five recent lift failures. A Kone elevator also malfunctioned at the Central MTR station on November 12.

Earlier inquiries into Fujitec lifts showed that the brand was safe, the government said. A Fujitec lift had failed in Wan Tau Tong Estate, Tai Po, this month.

The government expressed concerns over the recent lift incidents and announced that it would step up random inspections and spot checks of lifts in private buildings.

The department had said its team of 18 lift inspectors would be expanded. It added it was conducting random checks on 10 per cent of 49,000 lifts in private buildings, but would do more in the next three months.