Community & Education HKFP Buzz

Buildings made of cheap foam spark fire hazard fears as China developers cut costs

From a distance you may be forgiven for thinking that this chunky windowsill, spotted on a new housing development in Shaanxi province, is solid as concrete.

But in fact the decorative sill is made of foamed plastic and has been criticised as being a fire hazard for those living there.

Foamed plastic materials used in the construction. Photo: China News.

China News, a state-owned media outlet, reported that the material was “highly flammable,” which could compromise the safety of property owners.

Foamed plastics are cheap, lightweight synthetic resins, commonly used to insulate homes and make household items such as furniture, disposable coffee cups and meat trays seen in supermarkets.

Foamed plastic materials used in the construction. Photo: China News.

More than 100 residents living at the development have said they refuse to accept the low-quality housing and have demanded a remedy.

Foamed plastic materials used in the construction. Photo: China News.

Internet users denounced the Shaanxi construction work as a “tofu-dreg project”—a term often used in mainland China to describe a poorly built structure.

Buildings made of cheap foam spark fire hazard fears as China developers cut costs