The task force led by the Leisure & Cultural Services Department that is responsible for investigating the causes of the Mirror concert incident at the Hong Kong Coliseum on July 28 has completed its investigation.
The task force came to a conclusion on the causes of the incident after a detailed study of the findings of laboratory examinations of the fallen LED panel, the stage equipment and related installations.
The causes included a wire rope snapping due to metal fatigue, a problem with the design of the eyebolt installation as well as an undesirable safety factor of the suspension system.
According to the coliseum’s current hiring mechanism, hirers are required to ensure compliance and observance by themselves, their staff, co-presenters, contractors, sub-contractors and others, under the coliseum’s terms and conditions of hire and relevant laws.
Hirers are required to ensure all stage installations brought in, including the suspension setup, meet the safety standards. Hirers should also appoint an authorised person, usually a registered professional, to certify that the relevant installations meet the trade’s accepted standard and are sound and safe.
The coliseum has been operating for 40 years and adopting the arrangement, which has been followed by the industry. The generally smooth operation of the concerts held in the coliseum in the past proves that the mechanism has been working effectively.
The Government considered that the hirer and/or its contractors and sub-contractors breached some of the requirements in the coliseum’s terms and conditions of hire.
For example, the hirer should provide full and accurate details of the proposed arrangement for the use of a unit including the weight of any structure or equipment to be rigged or suspended from the roof space frame.
In view of the causes of the incident, the task force made a series of recommendations to strengthen the hiring mechanism to ensure that hirers will comply with the requirements and fulfil their responsibilities under the terms and conditions of hire so as to enhance safety for performance events, upholding the safety of performers and audiences.
These measures include requiring hirers to specify the roles and duties of the parties engaged by them in the checking mechanism, and requiring hirers to provide documentary proof of the accurate weight of the bring-in structures and equipment and engage registered professionals to verify its accuracy and carry out proof load testing for all motional or elevating machinery.
Hirers are required to submit the mill test certificate for steel wire ropes and conduct rehearsals well before the first performance.
The department will study the feasibility of introducing a third party independent auditor with the relevant expertise to audit the work and installations set up by the hirer and introduce a proper mechanism against breaches of the terms and conditions of hire for its venues.
In the coming few months, the department will discuss the implementation details with the performing industry before the actual application of new enhancement measures. Industry players are required to follow the three interim measures adopted since August or adopt other measures approved by the department.
The task force has completed its investigation and suggested enhancement measures. Since the possibility of human error in the incident or any breach of Hong Kong law cannot be ruled out, the case has been referred to the relevant department for further investigation.
Click here for the investigation report.