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Public warned not to burn wax and litter during Mid-Autumn Festival


The Leisure and Cultural Services Department has appealed to the public not to leave a mess from melted wax and to keep public places clean and tidy during next week's Mid-Autumn festivities.

The Pleasure Grounds Regulation prohibits melting or burning wax or sprinkling or pouring liquid onto hot wax, "in such a manner as to cause or as to be likely to cause a risk of injury to any person or damage to any property".

The department's uniformed and plain-clothes staff will step up their normal patrolling of leisure venues, public beaches, barbecue sites and the Hong Kong Cultural Centre and take instant enforcement action against offenders to safeguard public safety.

Offenders are liable to a maximum fine of $2,000 and 14 days' jail upon conviction.

Although lighting candles is not regarded as burning candles or wax under the regulation, people celebrating the Mid-Autumn Festival should place a metal can or other non-flammable containers under the candles to collect melted wax for easy disposal in litter bins. This way, they can avoid leaving unsightly blobs of wax on the ground, on leisure facilities and on kerbs of planters, which are extremely difficult to remove.

The department also reminded the public that the fixed penalty for littering was now $1,500 and offenders would be fined on the spot.

Also on display at major leisure venues are banners and posters warning about the dangers of burning wax and reminding the public of no littering and keeping places clean and tidy, and announcements are broadcast at venues, on TV and on the radio during the festival.

A hotline - 2414 5555 - will be set up for the public to report wax-burning cases at Leisure and Cultural Services grounds and venues. It will operate from 7pm to midnight on September 10, 11 and 12.

Upon receiving a complaint, the department will immediately deploy staff to the venue concerned to take appropriate enforcement action.

End/Saturday, September 6, 2003

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