Sun, Aug 11, 2013 - Page 3 News List

Hau defends construction fatalities online database

BAD OMEN:Taipei Deputy Mayor Chang Chin-oh said the online database could help homebuyers identify ‘haunted houses’ before purchasing any property

By Mo Yan-chih  /  Staff reporter

Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) yesterday defended the city’s online database of fatal accidents at major construction sites amid concerns about the impact such information might have on the sales of buildings, insisting that the database was meant to promote a safer work environment for workers.

The “Occupational Hazard Map” launched by Taipei City’s Department of Labor in January lists construction sites at which accidents occurred that resulted in at least one death or three injuries of on-site workers.

An updated version of the online map released last week further included previous records of deadly occupational accidents at all construction sites.

Taipei Deputy Mayor Chang Chin-oh (張金鶚) said the latest version of the map can serve as a reference for homebuyers to identify whether a property is “haunted” before purchasing it.

Hau yesterday said the online database was aimed at pushing for safer work environments at construction sites, and the city will continue its efforts to release related information to provide transparent information for the public.

“Whether occupational injuries or deaths on the construction sites make the buildings or apartments built on the site ‘haunted houses’ is a decision for consumers to make,” he said yesterday when attending a liver disease prevention activity in Taipei.

The city’s occupational incidents dropped 50 percent from last year since the online database was launched, according to the department.

Department commissioner Chen Yeh-hsin (陳業鑫) said the online database put pressure on construction firms and employers to make more effort to ensure the safety of construction sites and protect workers’ rights.

There have been three cases of occupational deaths at new construction sites since January, the database showed.

While the “Occupational Hazard Map” database offers information on construction sites with bad records, the other database — “Quality Construction Projects” — lists construction projects with no fatal accidents or records of construction suspensions due to safety concerns.

A total of 52 quality construction projects have been listed in the database since January.

The two databases can be found on the department’s Web site at www.doli.taipei.gov.tw.

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