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December 2, 2011

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Home » Metro » Health and Science

AC inspections now mandatory

AIR conditioners in office buildings must go through annual inspections under a new regulation that took effect yesterday.

Companies that violate the regulation will face fines of up to 100,000 yuan (US$15,729).

Local public health authorities said the failure to clean air conditioners properly promotes the spread of viruses and bacteria. Since most offices don't open windows when air conditioners are running, disease may spread throughout the building, especially during the season when flu or other infectious diseases may break out.

Last year the Health Supervision Institute of Shanghai inspected air-conditioning systems in 177 public places, finding that nearly 14 percent exceeded allowable amounts of bacteria or had thick accumulations of ash.

Although some companies have been cleaning their systems regularly, it isn't always done properly, officials said.

The new regulation says that if bacteria exceeding the standard are found in a system, the companies will first get a warning and be ordered to remedy the problem.

If they fail to comply properly and in a timely manner, they will be fined.


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