Residents of a luxury house in Hong Kong’s Tai Tam were evacuated in the early hours of Sunday following a massive landslide that damaged nearby homes, as the city recovered from floods sparked days ago by record rainfall.
Officials from the buildings, civil engineering and development departments conducted a site visit at the Redhill Peninsula in Tai Tam in the morning to evaluate the impact caused by the landslide and the safety of the slope there.
The Buildings Department earlier in the day issued an evacuation order for house No 72, demanding police immediately guide residents to safety after assessing the property was in immediate danger due to unstable soil.
A landslide had occurred near the coastline of Red Hill Peninsula, with a picture on social media showing a barren slope, exposed yellow soil and large piles of mud at its base.
The landslide affected at least three individual houses, one of them with scaffolding erected around it.
The Buildings Department said officials called in to inspect the landslide on Saturday night deemed houses 70, 72, and 74 along the coast as at risk from sliding mud.
“Houses No 70 and 74 are not in visible danger but since they are next to the slope that was struck by the landslide, the owners have been requested to fence off their outdoor swimming pools and gardens for further inspection,” a department spokesman said.
The spokesman added relevant officials would conduct further inspection on Sunday and consider follow-up action.
Red Hill Peninsula, a high-end residential estate, houses many celebrities and elite businesspeople. According to property listings, a detached house in Phase 3 of the development in recent years sold for as high as HK$112 million (US$14.3 million), with a usable area of 3,136 sq ft and an average price per square foot of HK$37,468.
Last Thursday, a record black rainstorm alert issued at 11.05pm lasted for more than 16 hours, with the city reporting the most amount of rain ever collected in an hour. The Observatory headquarters logged 158.1mm (6.2 inches) of rain between 11pm and midnight on Thursday, the highest since records began in 1884.
The downpour brought the city to a standstill the next morning as streets were turned into rivers, drivers were left stranded in cars, restaurants and railway stations flooded and landslides struck near residential estates. More than 100 people were sent to hospital.