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Management and Economics of Construction Safety in Hong Kong

S.W. Poon ,S.L. Tang ,Francis K.W. Wong

Publication Year: 2008

This book is important in keeping construction professionals informed about Hong Kong's experience in construction safety. It begins with an overview of safety management systems generally adopted in the Asian context with the support of construction accident statistics from a number of countries or cities.

Published by: Hong Kong University Press, HKU


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pp. v-

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pp. vii-viii

Notwithstanding the many efforts and achievements made over the past 10 years or so, construction safety in Hong Kong has remained an issue to all stakeholders in the construction industry, including developers , contractors, subcontractors, supervisors, workers , the government as well as the general public. In 1998, the accident rate per 1,000 workers reached a record high of 247.9; this figure dropped to 60.6 in 2007. ...

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1 - Construction Accident Statistics

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pp. 1-32

...The construction accident statistics recorded since 1997 in Hong Kong are reviewed with those available in the region including Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan. These countries or regions have been chosen because of their close vicinity and their comparable performance in economy (Table 1). Some of them have provided only basic data while others have included more details. In many cases, the statistics have been interpreted indirectly such as by backward calculation, and their correctness rests entirely with the authors. ...

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2 - Factors Affecting Effectiveness of Safety Programmes and Safety Performance on Construction Sites

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pp. 33-50

On many construction sites in Hong Kong, contractors have not implemented their safety programmes adequately. This is also a worldwide phenomenon. There are problems and difficulties in connection with the implementation. This chapter examines these problems and difficulties and reports on three studies, carried out in Hong Kong (Ahmed, Tang and Poon, 1999), Mainland China (Zeng, Tam and Deng, 2004) and the UK (Sawacha, Naoum and Fong, 1999). ...

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3 - Construction Safety Management Systems

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pp. 51-61

The safety records of construction in Hong Kong are considered unsatisfactory The accident rate in the Hong Kong construction industry during 1990-94, probably the worst period, was consistently in the range of 300 per 1,000 labourers each year. This means that 3 out of 10 labourers working on construction sites would come across an accident each year, which render them unable to work for at least three days. Until recent years the rate has gone down to 60 per 1,000. ...

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4 - Construction Safety Legislation in Hong Kong

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pp. 63-73

The construction industry in Hong Kong used to have a very bad reputation in terms of construction safety, particularly during the 1980s and early 1990s. One of the important measures to monitor safety performance on construction sites is through the use of legislation so that proprietors and parties concerned who have not discharged their safety responsibilities diligently and effectively may run the risk of being prosecuted. ...

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5 - Safety Auditing and Its Use in Proactive Prevention of Accidents

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pp. 75-85

Safety auditing is not in itself an element of safety management, but is a tool to measure the performance or the effectiveness of safety management. Safety audits are similar to audits conducted under quality protocols such as ISO 9000, and comprise interviews, inspection on physical conditions, tours and document review (Dennis, 1997). Safety audits can be categorized as First, Second and Third Party Audits (Legg et aI. , 1998). ...

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6 - Construction Accident Investigation

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pp. 87-104

Accident investigation is one of the 14 elements of safety management. Investigation is important as it not only reveals the real causes of an accident in determining the responsibility and liability, but also leads to necessary adjustment and improvement to prevent further accidents. This chapter presents some methods used in investigating accidents and the types of reports prepared by different relevant parties. ...

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7 - Role of the Supervisor

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pp. 105-117

As a construction site is maintained and managed by the main contractor, the site supervisor plays a key role in the daily management of the construction site. As representative of the main contractor, he has to ensure that the construction works are completed in accordance with the drawings and within the time and budget schedules, and that the quality is up to the requirement of the contract. ...

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8 - Financial Costs of Construction Accidents and Optimum Safety Investment

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pp. 119-129

The previous chapters have indicated a general consensus for construction contractors to improve their safety records and to increase their safety investment in construction projects. The higher the safety investment is, the better the safety performance will be. However, the extent of the investment is always a major concern. Recent research has revealed that in Hong Kong, most contractors set aside an amount of less than 0.5%, and some even less than 0.25%, of the contract sum for investing in safety in their contracts (Lai, 1995). ...

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9 - Social Costs of Construction Accidents and the Impact of Safety Investment on Social Costs

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pp. 131-146

... Ngai and Tang (1999) have attempted to compare the differences between financial costs and social costs, and to discover what the social costs of construction accidents are. Social costs are reckoned as the costs incurred by the society because additional resources are required to be utilized when construction accidents occur. If there were no accidents, the utilization of these society's resources could have been saved. This is the basic definition of social costs. Details will be given as readers go through this entire chapter. ...

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10 - Human Pain and Suffering Costs of Construction Accidents

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pp. 147-169

This chapter presents an estimate of the pain and suffering costs of the injured persons due to construction accidents in Hong Kong, based on an exhaustive study of High Court personal injury case judgements in connection with construction accidents in the years 1999 to 2003 , and then relates the findings to the social costs previously estimated (in Chapter 9). The pain and suffering costs for non-fatal accidents in Hong Kong legal terms comprise damages for "Pain, Suffering and Loss of Amenities" , and "Loss of Society" (explained below) assessed by High Court judges. ...

About the Authors

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pp. 171-172

E-ISBN-13: 9789888052554
Print-ISBN-13: 9789622099067

Page Count: 180
Publication Year: 2008

Research Areas


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Subject Headings

  • Construction industry -- China -- Hong Kong -- Safety measures.
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