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Hong Kong Lift Fined for Sending Woman Plummeting to her Death

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A maintenance supervisor was fined HK$40,000 on Friday over an accident last year that caused aHong Kong woman to plunge to her death down a lift shaft.

Ng Mou-shing, 73, was ordered to pay the fine at Fanling Court after pleading guilty to one count of failing to ensure that the lift was operating properly.

The fatal accident took place at Paris Court, a private estate in Sheung Shui, on May 11, 2018. The lift Ng was responsible for malfunctioned when a 64-year-old woman entered it on the seventh floor of the building.

The court heard that the lift did not stop at the floor as she entered. Instead, it kept going up until it trapped the woman at the roof of the lift’s entrance. After a struggle, she slipped into the lift shaft and suffered a fatal fall.

Investigations conducted by the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department later found that the brake mechanism had not been properly lubricated.

The lift required mandatory maintenance every three months, but the dried and non-lubricated areas that were found indicated that it had not been serviced for more than two years, the court heard.

Ng, a manager of Eugene Engineering Co’s maintenance department, was responsible for the servicing, according to the prosecutors.

Before being sentenced, Ng’s lawyer revealed that the engineer – who had more than four decades of maintenance experience – had already resigned from his job and asked that his licence to be revoked. The accident caused him to suffer agonising stress, the lawyer said.

Eugene Engineering Co, the company contracted for the lift’s maintenance, was earlier fined HK$63,000 (US$8,031).

The court heard thatthe lack of lubrication had caused a screw to protrude from a brake pad, which kept it from coming into contact with the other brake pad, and rendering the lift unable to stop.

In April 2018, another lift accident put a couple in critical condition after it crashed into the top of the lift shaft in a 46-storey building in Tusen Wan.

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