More cases of fallen windows in first five months of 2017

A fallen casement window.
A fallen casement window.PHOTO: BUILDING CONSTRUCTION AUTHORITY

SINGAPORE - There were 28 cases of fallen windows in the first five months of 2017, almost double that in the same period last year.

There were no injuries resulting from these cases.

Last year, there were 16 such cases in the first five months, though this year's figure is still higher than the last five years' average of 24 cases.

Homeowners should maintain their windows every six months, and make the necessary replacements, the Building Construction Authority (BCA) and the Housing Board said in a joint statement on Tuesday (June 6).

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Most of the fallen windows were casement types, found to have corroded aluminium rivets that were unable to hold the window panels in place, the agencies said.

Most of the sliding windows that fell did not have safety stoppers and angle strips to secure the window panels, and the windows could not slide smoothly along the tracks.

Homeowners are required to engage an approved window contractor to retrofit the aluminium rivets of casement windows with stainless steel rivets or screws.

If a window falls due to lack of maintenance, homeowners can be fined up to $10,000 and/or jailed for up to one year.

Those who fail to replace aluminium rivets in casement windows with stainless steel rivets can be fined up to $5,000 and/or jailed up to six months. Since 2006, 307 people have been fined.

"Falling windows can cause serious injuries to others in the neighbourhood. We should all do our part to ensure that public safety is not compromised," said Mr Lim Beng Kwee, director of BCA special functions group, adding that his agency will raise public awareness on how to conduct proper window maintenance.

A list of BCA-approved window contractors and window maintenance tips can be found at https://www.bca.gov.sg/Window_Safety/ and http://www.hdb.gov.sg/window_safety.