Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - ‘Donation’ for victims of blast



‘Donation’ for victims of blast

An onlooker examines the damage at a factory left by the explosion of a boiler, which killed two workers on Saturday in Phnom Penh.
An onlooker examines the damage at a factory left by the explosion of a boiler, which killed two workers on Saturday in Phnom Penh. Hong Menea

‘Donation’ for victims of blast

Investigators have determined a faulty safety valve caused the latest deadly boiler explosion in a garment factory. Ouch Many, director of the Ministry of Industry and Handicraft’s department of technical science and technology, said a safety valve failed to release excess pressure.

“It got stuck . . . So it exploded,” he said yesterday. The explosion at the unregistered Chan Seng Heng garment factory claimed two lives on Saturday in the capital’s Meanchey district, the second such fatal boiler blast in a month.

Many said the official investigation report has yet to be submitted, but the factory owners may be found to be in violation of Article 30 of the Law on Administration of Factories and Handicrafts, which provides for the regulation of boilers by the ministry.

“[The boiler] is not registered with the ministry or checked by the ministry,” he said.

A violation of Article 30 carries a fine of 2 million to 10 million riel (about $500 to $2,500) as stipulated by Article 46, which also states that in a case of accidental death the ministry must seek compensation as well as criminal charges.

“We will submit our report to our superiors and see how it goes,” Many said. However, factory owner Ly Hour, reached yesterday, said: “Now we have reached a deal with the victims; I will donate to them.”

Khoun Sambo, the 30-year-old son of the deceased Kong Phanny, 61, said the company agreed to provide 13 million riel as a “donation” but also had him sign a letter in which he agreed to “finish the case”.

“I am uneducated and my mother is already gone,” he said. Deputy Meanchey District governor Dy Rothkhemarun, said the family of Seurth Pal, 27, received a similar amount.

Hur Meng Varng, deputy chief of the Meanchey district police’s penal crime office, said the boiler technician who installed the boiler – identified as a suspect named Oum, 35 – had not yet been arrested. Meng Varng said he believed the factory owner should neither be held criminally responsible for not hiring a full-time boiler operator nor pay compensation.

“We cannot put blame or accuse the owner for not hiring someone to work closely on the boiler, as the owner said anyone could help on this task,” he said, adding: “Anyone can look after the boiler. There is not such a need for compensation because it is an accident.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia on the verge of national tragedy, WHO warns

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned that the country had reached another critical point amid a sudden, huge surge in community transmission cases and deaths. “We stand on the brink of a national tragedy because of Covid-19. Despite our best efforts, we are

  • Phnom Penh curfew starts today

    A two-week curfew from 8pm to 5am starts today in Phnom Penh, a day after a sub-decree detailing administrative measures to contain Covid-19 was issued by Prime Minister Hun Sen. “Travelling in Phnom Penh is temporally banned between 8pm and 5am,” said Phnom Penh governor

  • Vaccination open to foreigners in Cambodia

    The Ministry of Health on April 8 issued an announcement on Covid-19 vaccination for foreigners residing and working in Cambodia, directing the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and local authorities to register them. Health minister Mam Bun Heng, who is also head of the inter-ministerial

  • Cambodia gears up for muted New Year festival

    The recent curfew and restrictions imposed in the capital and other Covid-19 hotspots were intended to break the chain of transmission, Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said as municipal and provincial authorities issued new directives banning certain activities during the upcoming Khmer New Year

  • Culture ministry: Take Tuol Sleng photos down, or else

    The Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts has told Irish photographer Matt Loughrey to take down the photos of Khmer Rouge victims at Tuol Sleng Genocidal Museum which he allegedly colourised and altered to show them smiling. The ministry said Loughrey's work is unacceptable, affecting

  • Covid-19 vaccination now obligatory

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on April 11 issued a sub-decree making Covid-19 vaccination compulsory for individuals unless they have a medical certificate proving they have pre-existing health conditions that prevent them from doing so. «This applies to all members of the armed forces and civil servants