Gov't bears "unshirkable responsibility" in high-rise blaze killing 58: Shanghai mayor

08:17, January 17, 2011      

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The Shanghai municipal government bore unshirkable responsibility for a high-rise fire that took 58 lives two months ago, Mayor Han Zheng said Sunday at the city's parliamentary session.

Though the final investigation report on the fire has not been released, the accident exposed chaos and a lack of safety supervision in the construction market, for which the government was responsible, Han said in a report to the annual session of the Shanghai Municipal People's Congress, the local legislature.

Han said his government would draw lessons from the incident and strengthen management and supervision to ensure work safety.

The fire on Nov. 15, 2010 engulfed a 28-story residential building in Shanghai after welding sparks set nylon netting and scaffolding on fire.

Officials blamed the fire, that killed 58 people, on unlicensed welders, illegal sub-contracting and poor management.

On Jan. 11, the Shanghai municipal government issued new regulations to tighten supervision of the city's construction industry.

The 22-article regulations covered eight aspects, such as construction processes, risk control, contractor management and government supervision.

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