A teenage construction worker died and four others were seriously injured after part of a building collapsed in Siem Reap early Sunday while under renovation.
Svay Dangkum commune police chief Sun Vandet told The Post that Khum Pich, 16, of the province’s Puok district, was found dead among concrete rubble. Four fellow workers were also pulled out and were sent to hospital by the authorities.
“Once our authorities arrived at the site, first we saw five workers stuck in the concrete pile, but four workers were taken out immediately and sent to the hospital. Another worker was stuck under chunks of concrete but he died before he could be pulled out,” Vandet said.
‘Not the first time’
He named the first four workers as Mut Ry, 18, Di Sna, 27, Sal Sek, 27, and Meu Met, 30. They suffered bodily injuries caused by the falling concrete.
When asked why the building collapsed during renovations, Siem Reap land management office head Sar Chan Phallin claimed “inappropriate renovations” led to the disaster.
Phallin claimed the building, located near the town’s well-known Pub Street, was a French colonial structure and had been used as a restaurant since then.
“It is regretful. We think that the renovation contractor did not know about the [previous] construction techniques and they didn’t ask for ideas from our experts either,” Phallin said.
He said this wasn’t the first time an old building in the area had collapsed during renovations. He recalled an identical case within the last 10 years where two workers were injured during a similar collapse.
On Sunday, the building project’s contractor announced that he would pay compensation of $3,000 to Pich’s family and $3,500 each to the four injured workers, according to a Siem Reap police report.
The report also said the authorities had put a temporary ban on projects at the site until experts were brought in to advise.