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Factory closes down as workers pass out

AUTHORITIES ordered the temporary closure of a garment factory in the capital’s Meanchey district yesterday after 47 of its employees fainted while working.

Tep Bora, the chief of Boeung Tumpun commune, said 22 workers at the Pine Great (Cambodia) Garments factory collapsed on Friday, followed by 25 more on Saturday.

“We have decided to postpone [the operations of] the Pine Great factory for a period until they find the reason those workers fainted,” he said yesterday.

He added that a further 50 workers had reported headaches after shifts at the factory.

Tep Bora said that those who suffered fainting spells recovered after being sent to the Cambodian-Russian Friendship Hospital and were resting at home.

“We do not know for sure whether they fainted because of the chemicals that preserve the clothes, because we are still investigating,” he said.

Pok Vanthat, director of the Occupational Health Department at the Ministry of Labour, said yesterday that his department had yet to investigate the incident, but denied chemicals were a likely cause.

“It could be caused by a variety of different reasons, such as the bad environment in the factory, shock from seeing other workers faint or not eating enough food with enough vitamins,” he said.

Factory managers and affected workers could not be reached for comment yesterday.

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