A construction elevator shaft on top of a housing development project in Tai Kok Tsui fell onto the roof of a nearby building during typhoon Mangkhut on Sunday.

A police spokesperson told HKFP that they received no reports of injuries as of Sunday afternoon. The police said they received a report that an elevator shaft had collapsed at the Enchantee housing development construction site around 11:39am. The structure fell onto the roof of a nearby building at 241-243 Tai Kok Tsui Road.

The police evacuated 40 residents – 21 males, 18 females and a child – from the building. The police said they have notified relevant authorities to check the building’s structural safety.

YouTube video

The construction site is at 247, Tai Kok Tsui Road. Enchantee is an urban redevelopment project by Ocean Region Limited. It is 22 stories high with 76 flats. Sales for the project began at the end of June.

The Hong Kong Observatory hoisted typhoon signal no. 10 – the strongest signal – at 9:40am. It said the signal will remain in force throughout the afternoon.

Other buildings were damaged on Sunday as Mangkhut ripped through the city.

Miss Yau, who lives at Metro Harbour View in Tai Kok Tsui, recorded a video showing the wall of a nearby tong lau falling down. She told Apple Daily that the wall fell when a tree growing on it was pulled by the wind.

wall tong lau falling down

Dozens of windows were broken at Harbour Grand Kowloon hotel in Whampoa. Strong wind carried many items – including papers – out from the gaps.

At Sau Mau Ping, the metal roof of a rubbish collection station was blown away. The area is experiencing stronger wind as it is at a higher altitude.

According to the present forecast track, Mangkhut will be closest to the Pearl River Delta in the next few hours, skirting within about 100 kilometres to the south of Hong Kong.

The Observatory said the circulation of Mangkhut is extensive and destructive storm to hurricane force winds are affecting Hong Kong. At around noon, the maximum sustained winds recorded at Tate’s Cairn, Waglan Island and Tai Mei Tuk were 175, 161 and 153 kilometres per hour with maximum gusts 232, 195 and 198 kilometres per hour respectively.

Photo: HKO.

Residents in different areas have reported that their buildings were swaying under the severe typhoon.

Brad Locke, who lives on the 22nd floor of a narrow building in Yau Ma Tei, told HKFP: “It feels like I’m on the deck of a boat at sea at some points when gusts pick up. My building is swaying several inches from side to side – I can see my kitchen implements on their hooks moving back and forth.”

Others told HKFP they were terrified and were taking anti-nausea medication.

But Kenny Tse, chair of building surveying group of the Hong Kong Institute of Surveyors, said it was normal for buildings to sway slightly since they were designed to be flexible under strong wind. He said the public have no need to be too scared, but urged them to remain aware of abnormal cracks and sounds.

Update 17:15: This piece was changed to reflect the latest information from police. 

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.