Speeches and Presentations

Opening remarks by SCED at media session on service suspension of
Ngong Ping 360

Following is the translation of the opening remarks by the Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Gregory So, at the meet-the-media session today (January 26) on the service suspension of Ngong Ping 360 (NP360) yesterday:

This is the first time I meet the media in the Year of the Dragon. I wish you good health and all the best with your work.

NP360 is a major tourist attraction in Hong Kong. The Government is very concerned about the NP360 incident yesterday afternoon.

Immediately after the incident, the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department sent its staff to the site to examine the situation. Our colleagues from the Tourism Commission also established close contacts with the NP360 management to keep abreast of the latest developments.

This morning, I arranged to meet the NP360 management with the Director of Electrical and Mechanical Services and the Acting Commissioner for Tourism to get hold of the first-hand information of the incident. The meeting took place at noon.

At the meeting, we expressed the Government's deep concern over the repeated occurrences within a short period of time to the NP360 management. We also found the company's communication mechanism unsatisfactory. We consider that these situations are unacceptable.

The passengers of NP360 included local residents and tourists. Some of them were visiting Hong Kong for the first time. It was cold yesterday. The NP360 management needs to be more sensitive to the feelings and needs of the passengers.

We have urged NP360 to take immediate actions to review the following three areas and make improvements as soon as possible:

The first area is about contingency planning. NP360 has to improve its contingency planning and execution of the plans. While passenger safety is of top priority, the feelings of passengers should also be well looked after.

The second area is about its communication mechanism with passengers. NP360 must improve its communication mechanism with passengers. It has to disseminate messages to passengers promptly and accurately whenever incidents happen.

The third area is about notification of service suspension. NP360 has to improve its practice in notifying passengers of service suspension. It needed to coordinate such work and execute it in an effective manner after its decision to suspend service for 10 days, so as to minimise inconvenience to visitors.

NP360 agrees that there are rooms for improvement in the above three areas, and pledges to take immediate actions to review them and carry out improvement measures.

The Government hopes that NP360 will work on the improvement measures with complete dedication. It has to ensure that the highest safety standard is maintained while being sensitive to the needs of passengers. We also hope that NP360 will carry out thorough inspection of the components of its cable car system, so that the service will resume in a stable and safe manner to boost the confidence of visitors.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

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