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Kai Tak site accident being probed

The Government expressed that it is highly concerned about an accident involving the collapse of a bamboo scaffold at a Kai Tak construction site today in which two workers were killed and three others injured.   A preliminarily investigation by the Buildings Department (BD) found that the scaffold, measuring about 15m by 8m, fell to the ground from the external wall on the 19th floor of a building under construction.   The BD said it will conduct a comprehensive investigation into the cause of the incident, including whether the scaffold, as temporary works, complied with the Buildings Ordinance and whether the registered contractor and any related persons have properly discharged their responsibilities.   It added that if anyone is found in contravention of the ordinance, it will take follow-up actions, including instigating prosecution and referring to the Contractors Disciplinary Board for disciplinary proceedings.   The Labour Department (LD) also launched an immed

Retired train restored to former glory

Diesel Electric Engine No. 60 "Peter Quick" or L60, which began operation in 1974, was one of the last fleet of diesel electric engines introduced to Hong Kong for the Kowloon-Canton Railway.

 

Operating on the East Rail Line, L60 had witnessed the golden era of railway freight services between Hong Kong and the Mainland. Following the full electrification of the Kowloon-Canton Railway in 1983, L60 was withdrawn from passenger services and switched to hauling freight and maintenance trains.

 

After serving Hong Kong for nearly half a century, L60 was retired from service in 2021 and handed over to the Railway Museum in 2023 for its permanent collection and display by the MTR Corporation (MTRC), with the conservation work supervised by the Conservation Office of the Leisure & Cultural Services Department (LCSD).

 

Painstaking work

Fabricated primarily from metal materials, L60 was subjected to prolonged exposure to outdoor environments throughout its service life. As a consequence, its iron parts inevitably suffered from corrosion and deterioration of its protective coating.

 

In preparation for its relocation to the museum, in June last year, the LCSD team conducted extensive conservation work and applied a protective coating to the locomotive at the MTR Lo Wu Locomotive Running Shed, to minimise the engine’s rate of deterioration and ensure its suitability for outdoor display.

 

“One major challenge in the conservation process lay in accurately matching the paint colours for the body,” explained Leisure & Cultural Services Department Assistant Curator II (Conservation) Jacky Wong.

 

“To restore the most accurate colours after prolonged exposure to rain and sun required repeated matching with the reference data provided by the MTRC. However, certain degrees of colour difference still existed, while the most difficult colour to retouch, blue, can only be found in concealed, non-visible areas of the engine.”

 

After two months of painstaking work, the conservation efforts were completed. However, transporting the engine to the museum for display posed a fresh set of challenges.

 

Major move

The team started planning a transportation route for the engine over a year ago and used computers to simulate the entire transportation and assembly process. The engine’s body and bogies had to be transported separately, with the move taking place late at night.

 

Particular caution had to be exercised close to the museum, as the road adjacent to it is exceedingly narrow. Upon arrival, the locomotive was reunited with its bogies.

 

“We needed to consider the loading capacity of the road and the height of the transportation crew.

 

“It was because there is some limitation when you transport goods or transport something on the roads of Hong Kong. So, by considering all these factors, we concluded that we needed to separate the bogies from the locomotive body to meet all the requirements for the transportation,” noted Leisure & Cultural Services Department Assistant Curator I (Conservation) Jimmy Wong.

 

Historically meaningful

Following the installation of the No. 60 engine, the museum now boasts two diesel-electric engines in its collection. It believes the latest addition to its exhibits will give visitors a better understanding of the historical development of Hong Kong’s railways.

 

“It witnessed a series of milestone events in the history of Hong Kong, such as the prospering of the railway freight service between the Mainland and Hong Kong in the 1980s and 1990s,” Leisure & Cultural Services Department Assistant Curator I (Hong Kong Railway Museum) Sunny Chan said.

 

“We want to preserve this to raise the public's interest in the history of Hong Kong’s railways. For the museum, we can introduce the significance of how the railway freight service can help the development of the Hong Kong economy as well as the tighter relationship between Hong Kong and the Mainland.”


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