Construction firm fined $13,000 for unauthorised work in Yio Chu Kang Road, damaging 28 trees
A construction company carried out street works in Yio Chu Kang Road without approval from the authorities and damaged the roots of 28 roadside trees in September 2020.
The firm then failed to report the damage to the National Parks Board (NParks) and eventually, three of the trees had to be removed due to extensive root damage.
On Thursday (Aug 11), CHC Construction pleaded guilty to three offences, including carrying out street works in a public street without approval, and was fined $13,000.
Another three charges were taken into consideration during sentencing.
According to court documents, NParks found that 25 rain trees and three angsana trees in Yio Chu Kang Road were damaged on Sept 18, 2020.
Investigations showed that CHC Construction was responsible for the damage while carrying out railing replacement for the Land Transport Authority (LTA).
The 28 trees had been marked for retention before the start of the road works.
NParks said: "The accused company had proceeded, without seeking approval from the Commissioner of Parks and Recreation, with the excavation works that resulted in damage caused to the tree roots of 28 roadside trees having tree girths between 0.5m to 3.2m.
"The accused company also failed to inform NParks or LTA about the damage caused to the tree roots arising from the works done at the sites."
NParks issued a formal stop-work order to LTA on Sept 24 and CHC Construction halted its works the same day.
Between September and November 2020, the board conducted investigations to assess the damage caused to the trees as a result of removing the concrete footings of the railing.
The major tree roots had been severed during the excavation works. As a result, three trees had to be removed due to extensive root damage that led to concerns about safety.
Other trees also had to be trimmed as part of crown reduction works to mitigate the damage caused to their roots, according to court documents.
Those who conduct street works without approval can be fined up to $30,000 and receive further fines in the case of a continuing offence.
For damaging a tree in a public park, an offender can be fined up to $5,000.