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May 21, 2014

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Demolition contractors in spotlight after fatal accident

AUTHORITIES in Hongkou District said they will enhance scrutiny of firms involved in the demolition of residential properties after two people were killed earlier this month when the condemned building they were renting illegally collapsed on top of them.

Any company that fails its annual evaluation twice in three years, subcontracts projects or is found guilty of significant negligence will be blacklisted, an official with the housing guarantee and management bureau said yesterday.

Once blacklisted, the company and its project manager will be prohibited from undertaking any demolition work for five years, the official said.

“The aim of the measures is to ensure old residential buildings are demolished safely.”

Firms engaged in demolition work are strictly prohibited from leasing condemned buildings to third-party tenants, converting them into dormitories for their own workers, or adapting them for any other purpose, the person said.

Demolition workers are required to wear uniforms at all times and their sites must be kept off-limits to the public. Condemned buildings must not be used to store flammable materials, which could present a safety hazard to the local community, the official said.

On May 4, two people were killed and three others were injured when a residential building in Hongkou that had been scheduled for demolition collapsed.

The head of the demolition team, surnamed Dai, is now in police custody.

He is alleged to have rented out several condemned properties to out-of-towners who ran small businesses.


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