The Korea Herald


Government to conduct comprehensive facility checks as number of accidents rise

By Jo He-rim

Published : Dec. 13, 2018 - 17:25

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The government will conduct comprehensive safety inspections of public facilities following a recent spate of accidents, including a telecom network failure caused by a fire at a mobile carrier’s building and the derailment of a bullet train.

In a meeting with ministries and regional governments, Interior and Safety Minister Kim Boo-kyum expressed regret over the series of accidents and highlighted the need to come up with a safety system. 

Interior and Safety Minister Kim Boo-kyum Interior and Safety Minister Kim Boo-kyum

“As safety minister, I am sorry for the series of accidents that occurred in relation to social infrastructure,” Kim said. “We should not think that the accidents at very basic and essential facilities happened by coincidence. We should be open to all possibilities. (The accidents) could portend a bigger accident.”

Pointing out that some cities were developed 30 to 40 years ago, Kim emphasized that aging facilities need to be maintained.

“It is time for us to make investments for the safety of these old facilities,” Kim added.

During the meeting, officials reviewed safety measures for facilities in four sectors -- energy, railroads, finance administration and nuclear power plants.

Public buildings and areas prone to fires and other dangers, such as nursing hospitals and traditional markets, will be regularly inspected, according to the ministry.

Authorities will also review replacing or reinforcing energy facilities, including heating pipes buried underground and gas pipelines. They also discussed ways to prevent incidents related to harmful chemicals and traditional markets in winter.

By Jo He-rim (