43 cases of fallen windows in first 11 months of 2021, home owners advised to maintain windows, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper
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43 cases of fallen windows in first 11 months of 2021, home owners advised to maintain windows

There were 43 cases of fallen windows recorded across Singapore from January to last month this year. No one was injured.

About half - 22 cases - involved casement windows, while 16 were sliding windows and five involved other types, such as louvre, said the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) and the Housing Board on Saturday (Dec 11).

The tally of 43 is lower than the 49 during the same time frame last year.

During the same period this year, BCA was alerted to 12 cases involving windows that were not well-maintained and on the verge of becoming dislodged. It worked with the HDB in engaging home owners to rectify the situation.

Investigations into the cases found that one of the main causes of fallen casement and sliding windows was corroded aluminium rivets that were unable to hold the casement window panels in place.

Since 2004, BCA has been issuing retrofitting orders requiring home owners to replace aluminium rivets in casement windows with stainless steel ones.

Another cause is a lack of safety stoppers and angle strips to keep sliding window panels within the tracks. Without these safety features, the windows can detach and fall when excessive force is used to open or close them.

BCA and HDB advised home owners to check and replace safety features that are worn out.

Home owners can be fined up to $5,000, jailed for up to six months, or both, for failing to replace all aluminium rivets in casement windows with stainless steel ones.

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

Since 2006, 388 people have been fined and 92 people have been prosecuted for fallen windows.

Home owners and occupants are advised to check and maintain their windows at least once every six months as they may detach and fall when their parts become loosened or defective over time due to wear and tear.

BCA group director for building resilience Thanabal Kaliannan said that, as Singapore has many high-rise buildings and a densely built environment, each fallen window can cause death or serious injuries.

"All home owners and occupants can play a part to mitigate this risk by checking and maintaining their windows regularly," he added.

A list of BCA-approved window contractors and window maintenance tips can be found at the BCA website and the HDB website.

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