‘European standards failed to protect Science Museum’

European architectural standards were unable to protect the Macau Science Museum from recent typhoons because they are unsuitable for Macau’s specific weather requirements, according to a construction industry expert.
Pang Yiu Kwong, Vice Chairman of the Macau Construction Industry Association, provided his assessment during the National Quality Engineering Architecture Construction Techniques Seminar, held at the Macau Science Museum.
Pang remarked that Macau has many buildings which have applied European architectural standards, but that Macau’s requirements for anti-typhoon and anti-flooding are different from those in Europe.
He gave the example of the Macau Science Museum by explaining that the external structure of the museum was built according to European standards, but the facility has sustained damage several times due to typhoons.
“European standards have some very obvious loopholes. Europe is not a place with strong winds and there is not much rain either. European standards are appropriate given the continent’s geographical conditions, but they are flawed when used in Macau,” said Pang.
In addition to considering European standards unsuitable for Macau, Pang recommends Macau to follow Guangdong standards, or, more specifically, Greater Bay Area standards, which are yet to be drafted.
According to Pang, Macau, Hong Kong and the nine Greater Bay Area cities in Guangdong are drafting a guideline together for the construction industry on coastal regions that suffer from strong winds and flooding. Pang claims that once the regulation drafting is completed, the Greater Bay instructions will provide technical guidance in respect of construction, examination and maintenance of buildings and structures.
Pang, who is also a director of the China Steel Construction Society, recommended that Macau refer to Guangdong province’s technical regulations for metal roofing in strong wind-prone areas, and Fujian province’s standards for metal roofing in coastal areas.
This is not the first time a local expert has criticized the adoption of European standards in Macau. Previously, European environmental standards were also said to be unsuitable for Macau, and it was suggested that Macau refer to its neighboring cities when it comes to environmental assessment.

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