Published on : Tuesday, July 6, 2021
A massive overnight explosion in a chemical factory in Thailand killed one person and left nearly 30 injured. The blast took place near Samut Prakan’s Bnag Phli area and covered the sky in dark balck smoke. The fire broke out at the early hours in Monday in the southeastern area of Bangkok near Suvarnabhumi Airport.
According to reports, the blast shook a terminal of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport prompting to set off the fire alarms immediately. However, no flights were cancelled following the explosion. Firefighters used helicopters, including some from the army, to spray flame retardant foam over the burning Ming Dih Chemical Co plant complex.
Samut Prakan, a central Thai province on the Gulf of Thailand, stands just south of Bangkok at the mouth of the Chao Phraya River. Although the fire was initially brought under control around dawn, the black smoke engulfed the sky late in the day. Fear of more explosions from the leaking chemicals led to the evacuation of nearly 500 residents from the area.
By noon, elderly residents in wheelchairs were evacuated to a nearby school about 9 kilometers away. Lieutenant General Ampon Buarubporn informed in a statement that the public have been ordered to stay away from a radius of at least 500 metres around the blast site. Rescue workers drove around the neighbourhood in emergency vans, telling thousands of residents via loudspeakers to leave for their safety.
Somsak Kaewsena, Chief of Bang Pli district said in a statement that most of the injuries happened from cuts and the one death was of a firefighter. Kornsith Laophan, 18, was reportedly killed as he fell into the flames while he and other volunteers was in the middle of the rescue operation.