Onus on HDB to resolve issue of fallen windows

It is alarming that the number of fallen windows from HDB flats since 2005 to November this year has climbed to 753 cases (46 cases of fallen windows from Jan to Nov; Dec 13).

There were no casualties from the cases this year. However, we should not bet on luck because a casement window falling from a high floor is potentially a killing missile. The problems must be fixed before an accident happens.

Windows are integral parts of HDB flats. They are expected to last as long as the building.

I don't see why owners should be penalised for lack of maintenance of windows because they did not choose those "inferior" windows.

When stainless steel rivets became mandatory in 2004, it was obvious that the window installations failed to meet performance and safety standards in our humid climate. Hence innocent owners should not be blamed for corroded aluminium rivets in windows.

The Housing Board should act fast to resolve the fallen window problem with window makers to rectify any product defects.

There is no reason to get owners to engage professionals to add safety stoppers and angle strips on window tracks, which should be provided by window makers before installation.

By right, window manufacturers should guarantee that their products comply with international standards to meet quality, performance, safety and endurance tests under any climatic conditions.

Since HDB supplied the windows that were problematic, the onus is on it to resolve the issues with the manufacturers.

Paul Chan Poh Hoi

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 22, 2018, with the headline 'Onus on HDB to resolve issue of fallen windows'. Print Edition | Subscribe