Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - More than 40 faint as firm denies exit

More than 40 faint as firm denies exit

More than 40 faint as firm denies exit

More than 40 workers had fainted at a garment factory yesterday after officials prevented them leaving the building when four of their co-workers collapsed, a labour department official said.

The mass fainting occurred at the Nanguo Garment Co Ltd factory in Preah Sihanouk province’s Prey Nub district, where more than 200 workers fainted less than a month ago.

Yov Khemara, provincial director of the Ministry of Labour, said initial investigations suggested 45 women and one man had fainted because of a lack of oxygen.

“After the previous fainting, the factory has not really improved its ventilation,”  Yov Khemara said. 

“There is not enough air to breathe. So it caused the heat to increase. Their fear also contributed to the fainting.”

About four female workers had fainted in the morning, causing their bodies to convulse and sending their co-workers, who feared the souls of ghosts had entered their bodies, into a frenzy, Yov Khemara said.

Officials had prevented workers from leaving because they feared they would not return, he said.

About 40 more hungry and fatigued women fainted about midday and were taken to hospital.

Preah Sihanouk provincial police chief Tak Vanntha said a strong odour from freshly cut fabric had caused the fainting.

Ly Dy, provincial monitor for the Free Trade Union, said the factory should not have prevented  workers leaving.

Factory officials could not be reached for comment.

Maeve Galvin, a consultant at the International Labour Organisation’s Better Factories Cambodia, said studies had shown mass factory faintings in recent months were the result of several factors.

“It’s a combination of heat stress, poor nutrition, and there is a psychogenic component, usually beginning with one person having fainting symptoms.

“Structural changes need to be made. Because it’s a psychogenic condition that is contributing, it is very real and shouldn’t be confused with something psychological. So it’s important for factories to have a procedure and a drill.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh

  • Monks given ‘Samdech’ title for contributions

    Three senior monks on Thursday were given the highest-ranking title “samdech”, with Prime Minister Hun Sen saying that the promotions were due to their contributions to Buddhism. The three distinguished monks were promoted on Thursday morning at Botum Vatey pagoda in Phnom Penh, at a

  • Facing possible sanctions, PM criticises Washington’s rights record

    While United States congressmen are discussing the Cambodia Democracy Act and an amendment that could impose more sanctions against Cambodia’s government, Prime Minister Hun Sen on Tuesday counterattacked by questioning the respect of human rights and democracy under the US-backed Lon Nol regime, and