Speech at Panel on Security

Proposed amendments to the Fire Safety (Buildings) Ordinance

Implementation of the Fire Safety (Buildings) Ordinance

Mr CHAN Chun-ying expressed support for the proposed amendments to FS(B)O. He enquired about the longest extension period approved for compliance with the Fire Safety Directions (“Directions”) so far, as well as whether any minimum compliance requirements were set for owners to enhance the fire safety standards of their buildings.

S for S advised that all requirements specified in the Directions were important. Among 8 875 target composite buildings (“TCBs”) with Directions issued, 8 241 TCBs had yet to comply with the Directions issued by the Fire Services Department (“FSD”). He further explained that while TCBs generally met the prevailing fire safety standards at the time of their construction, FS(B)O sought to enhance the fire safety standards of TCBs. FSD and the Buildings Department (“BD”) would normally give building owners a year to comply with the Directions. If the owners needed more time to prepare for and carry out the improvement works for reasons including that involved the formation of an owners’ corporation (“OC”), EAs would consider their applications for extending the compliance period of the Directions in a reasonable manner. The longest extension period approved was about 13 years so far.

Further facilitation measures to assist owners of old buildings

Noting that FSD had introduced the “Improvised Hose Reel System” for buildings of three storeys or less, Mr CHAN Chun-ying was concerned as to the feasibility of relaxing the installation requirements of fire service water tanks and pumps for old buildings of four to six storeys.

S for S said that apart from the introduction of the “Improvised Hose Reel System” in 2016 for buildings of three storeys or less, the capacity requirements for fire service water tanks had also been lowered for buildings of four storeys or above. The Government was exploring the feasibility of extending the “Improvised Hose Reel System” to buildings of four to six storeys having regard to the latest technological advancement whilst ensuring a sufficient water pressure be in place.