The company responsible for operating the tower crane that collapsed and killed two workers while demolishing the Mitsukoshi department store in Causeway Bay two years ago has been fined HK$36,000. Bestyield Plant Service earlier pleaded guilty to five breaches of the Factories and Industrial Undertakings Ordinance, which has a section governing safe use of cranes. The company admitted failures, including the provision of information or training needed to operate the crane, and proper inspections. The tragedy happened on July 10, 2007, during demolition work on the building at 500 Hennessy Road. As seven workers were lowering the mast of the crane, its climbing gear and some mast sections bent and the crane collapsed. Tam Shing and Tam Cheung-tai died. Though Bestyield admitted its faults, its lawyer, Kenneth Ng Hung-sui, said during an earlier mitigation hearing that there was no evidence that anything the company did or omitted to do caused the incident. The crane manufacturer, Wolffkran, had offered 10 possible causes for the collapse but had not determined which was the main one, he said. Magistrate Gary Lam Kar-yan yesterday fined the company HK$36,000 in total for the five breaches. Lam said the biggest criticism of Bestyield was that it should have used a heavier balancing load on the crane to ensure safety. The other breaches, he accepted, were merely technical. He added that this was a rare and tragic case. Prosecutors have decided not to press charges against two other companies: China Overseas Building Construction, the site's principal contractor, and China Overseas Machinery, the company that rented the crane from Proficiency Net. A spokeswoman for the Labour Department said officials would seek advice from the secretary for justice on whether the penalty imposed was appropriate. Chan Kam-hong, of the Association for the Rights of Industrial Accident Victims, said the penalty was too lenient. 'We are talking about two human lives, and their families are badly affected,' he said. The verdict would hurt the industry, he said. 'Companies will continue to ignore the importance of safety issues in construction sites and accidents will happen again and again.' The maximum penalty under the Factories and Industrial Undertakings Ordinance is a fine of HK$500,000.