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Kingsford Construction fined S$130,000 for safety lapses at Hillview Peak worksite

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In October 2014, a full stop work order (SWO) was issued to Kingsford following safety lapses such as open sides and staircases without handrails that could lead to fall from heights.

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In October 2014, a full stop work order (SWO) was issued to Kingsford following safety lapses such as open sides and staircases without handrails that could lead to fall from heights.

KINGSFORD Construction has been convicted and fined S$130,000 under the Workplace Safety and Health Act (WSHA) for multiple safety lapses uncovered during an inspection in June 2016, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said on Thursday.

Kingsford was engaged to carry out construction works at the Hillview Peak condominium.

The worksite had been inspected on two earlier occasions, in October 2014 and May 2015. In October 2014, a full stop work order (SWO) was issued to Kingsford following safety lapses such as open sides and staircases without handrails that could lead to fall from heights. Kingsford was fined S$10,000.

In May 2015 however, the same lapses were identified and a partial SWO was issued along with a fine of S$19,000. In both instances, the SWOs were lifted after rectifications were made.

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During the inspection on June 8, 2016, safety lapses were found yet again and a full SWO was issued from June 8, 2016 to July 18, 2016.

Chan Yew Kwong, MOM's director of occupational safety and health inspectorate, said: "MOM sought for a heavy penalty because of Kingsford's blatant disregard for safety and its repeated failures to comply with our regulatory requirements."

"Companies must address all safety failures identified during a MOM inspection and put in place effective measures to prevent recurrence. They should not put their workers' lives at risk and wait for an accident to happen before taking safety seriously," he added.

Statistics released by MOM and the Workplace Safety and Health Institute on Wednesday showed a decrease in workplace deaths and injuries in the first half of 2017, compared to the first and second halves of 2016.

One of the top two causes of workplace deaths included falls from heights.

Between January and June this year, a total of 4,300 workplace safety and health violations were uncovered, with 28 SWOs issued. Fines totalling S$500,000 were imposed on 190 companies.

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