Faulty lifts at new HDB high-rise leave residents worried for their safety
Residents at Bukit Batok's Skyline II worry for their safety as Sigma Elevator comes under scrutiny again
They are new HDB flats with many owners yet to move in, but the lifts at one particular block are already experiencing technical problems.
On Wednesday, some homeowners had just collected their keys to one of the three blocks at Skyline II at Bukit Batok Street 22 and were looking forward to seeing their new home.
But they found that one of the four lifts at the 33-storey building was not working properly.
The lifts are from Sigma Elevator, which has been banned from tendering for new HDB projects since October 2015 due to poor performance and installation delays.
On Wednesday, Facebook user Robin Zhang posted on Skyline I and II's Facebook page for residents that there were problems when he was using lift D at Block 296B at 10.30am.
He said while going up to the 18th storey, the lift stopped suddenly. After going up and down several times, it stopped at the sixth storey.
When the door opened, he almost fell out as the lift had stopped about 20cm above the landing.
He added: "I was very scared and decided to use the staircase instead."
When The New Paper team visited the block at 11am yesterday, maintenance workers from Sigma were at the lift lobby.
One of them, who declined to be named, said he was checking if the opening of lift D was in line with the floor level.
He added that the lift buttons on the 15th and 16th storey were not working.
Lift D was then shut down for servicing.
The TNP team used lift C and when we were at the 16th storey, the lift indicated it was at the seventh storey.
Once out of the lift at the 16th storey, we pressed the buttons several times but the doors did not open.
For now, it's ferrying just passengers. When people start moving bulky and heavy items, is there any assurance it can sustain the heavy load and usage?Miss Lulu Mustika, who lives on the 30th storey at Skyline II at Bukit Batok Street 22
Miss Lulu Mustika, 30, a freelance wedding planner who had just got her keys to a three-room unit on the 30th storey, said she was worried for the safety of her two young children, aged one and six.
She told TNP: "I'm staying on one of the higher floors, so I definitely have to take the lift. For now, it's ferrying just passengers. When people start moving bulky and heavy items, is there any assurance it can sustain the heavy load and usage?"
Another resident, Miss Maggie Ng, 34, a senior customer service supervisor who owns a four-room unit, was aware of the breakdown incidents Sigma lifts were involved in.
She said: "I think the lift system isn't reliable. What if the lift breaks down when people are delivering furniture? I have knee problems, what if there's a sudden drop? HDB shouldn't release the keys if (the block is) not done properly."
Bukit Batok Member of Parliament, Mr Murali Pillai, told TNP the HDB and the Building and Construction Authority were investigating the matter urgently and inspecting the site.
He said: "I'm very concerned about what happened to the resident. It was fortunate he did not suffer any injury. I would like a thorough investigation and explanation for this as soon as possible."
When contacted, Sigma Elevator Singapore said: "We are working to gather more information as quickly as possible. There is nothing more important to Sigma than the safety of our employees, customers and the people who rely on our products and services every day."