Firefighters nonetheless working to place out lethal Bangladesh container blaze

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Firefighters labored for a second day Sunday to extinguish a large blaze that killed at the least 49 folks at a container depot in southeast Bangladesh, the most recent incident highlighting the nation’s poor industrial security observe file.

The fireplace that additionally injured greater than 200 broke out on the transport container facility Saturday night time at Sitakunda, 40 km (25 miles) from the port metropolis of Chittagong, triggering an enormous blast and a number of container explosions, officers mentioned.

Chemical-filled containers had been nonetheless exploding Sunday as firefighters tried to douse the hearth, and officers mentioned the military had joined the mission. Drone footage confirmed thick columns of smoke and rows of burned-out containers.

Explosions had shaken the neighborhood and shattered home windows in close by buildings, native residents mentioned.


Firefighters try to contain a blaze that broke out in an inland container depot at Sitakunda, near the port city Chittagong, Bangladesh, June 4,2022, in this screen grab obtained from a video on social media.

Firefighters attempt to comprise a blaze that broke out in an inland container depot at Sitakunda, close to the port metropolis Chittagong, Bangladesh, June 4,2022, on this display seize obtained from a video on social media.
(Oliur Rahman by way of Fb/by way of REUTERS)

The demise toll may rise as among the injured are in a vital situation and rescue operations are nonetheless persevering with, mentioned Chittagong civil surgeon Mohammed Elias Hossain. The injured included firefighters and policemen, he mentioned.

He mentioned all medical doctors within the district had been referred to as in to assist sort out the scenario, whereas social media was flooded with appeals for emergency blood donations.

5 firefighters have died and at the least 50 others, together with 10 policemen, had been injured, he added.

A whole bunch of distraught family members rushed from one hospital to a different in a frantic seek for their family members, witnesses mentioned.

A burnt passenger ferry is seen anchored off the coast of Jhalokati district on the Sugandha River in Bangladesh, Dec. 24, 2021. 

A burnt passenger ferry is seen anchored off the coast of Jhalokati district on the Sugandha River in Bangladesh, Dec. 24, 2021. 
(G3 Field Information Photograph)

“I misplaced my brother,” mentioned Shakhawat Hossain, cousin of Afzal Hossain, 25, who died within the fireplace. “His father died 10 months in the past. He was the youngest, however he was the one one who took care of his mom … She has been fainting time and again. Nothing can console her.”

It was not instantly clear what induced the blaze. Hearth service officers mentioned they suspected it could have originated in a container of hydrogen peroxide and unfold rapidly to different containers.


Newton Das, a fireplace service official, mentioned there have been nonetheless explosions on Sunday afternoon of containers of hydrogen peroxide and others containing sulfur. 

“It is actually getting more durable as poisonous fumes engulfed the realm,” he mentioned.

Locals and firefighters gather around buildings that caught fire in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Feb. 21, 2019. A devastating fire raced through at least five buildings in an old part of Bangladesh's capital and killed scores of people. 

Locals and firefighters collect round buildings that caught fireplace in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Feb. 21, 2019. A devastating fireplace raced by way of at the least 5 buildings in an outdated a part of Bangladesh’s capital and killed scores of individuals. 
(G3 Field Information Photograph/Rehman Asad)

Bangladesh has prospered over latest a long time to grow to be the world’s second-biggest exporter of clothes, however the infrastructure and institutional focus for industrial security remains to be nascent, the Worldwide Labour Group mentioned earlier this yr.

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Lax laws and poor enforcement of guidelines have been blamed for a number of giant fires which have led to tons of of deaths in recent times.

In 2020, three folks had been killed after an oil tank exploded at a container depot in Chittagong’s Patenga space. In July final yr, 54 died when an inferno ripped by way of a meals processing manufacturing facility outdoors the capital Dhaka.

At the least 70 died in a fireplace that engulfed a number of buildings in a centuries-old neighborhood of Dhaka in 2019.

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