Reckless builders to be hunted

February 5, 2009

Lookatvietnam – Irresponsible contractors would face legal charges for accidental deaths caused by open drains near construction sites, said head of the HCM City’s Department of Transport Tran Quang Phuong.

“Any contractors who don’t meet this criteria will be forced to stop their work”. (Photo: VNN)

According to Phuong, individuals and agencies, who supervise construction projects, must assume specific responsibilities to prevent more accidents.

The decision was made after public criticism about the rising number of child deaths caused by open manholes near HCM City’s unfinished construction sites. The latest death was seven-year-old Ngo Hoang Vo on December 31 in the Nhieu Loc-Thi Nghe Canal area.

The municipal Department of Transport required investors and contractors to move their construction sites to the edge of the city and to increase their working time to three shifts a day to avoid traffic jams.

The department said that construction sites would be established along 80 routes this February. Of the number, three big projects to improve the city’s water system will make up 96 construction sites on 60 different streets, according to Phuong.

“Any contractors who don’t meet this criteria will be forced to stop their work,” said Phuong.

However progress is not easy.

“Not all bid packages allow for increased working hours. Our bid package No 10 will not allow us to progress as we have to deal with light shortages, and this is what causes accidents,” said Phan Hoang Dieu, director of the city’s management board for the environment in the Nhieu Loc-Thi Nghe area.

Eight children have died since last June because of these death traps near construction areas in HCM City. After families are compensated for their loss, the construction sites open up again.

None of the contractors have been taken to court.

VietNamNet/Viet Nam News

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