Twenty garment workers were injured, some seriously, after the truck transporting them to work lost control and tipped over on National Road 3 in Kandal province’s Kandal Stung district on Thursday, local police said.
Deputy district police chief Cheng Sun told The Post that, after the accident, the driver ran off, leaving over 30 garment workers stranded.
Sun said the driver was speeding in an attempt to pass a motorbike hitched to a trailer. However, upon returning to his lane, he lost control, causing the truck to tip over, spilling the garment workers onto the road.
He speculated that the driver was worried the workers would be late to work.
“Of the 20 injured workers, two are men. We intervened immediately and called for an ambulance to take the seriously wounded to Preah Kosamak Hospital [in Phnom Penh].
“We will continue to investigate, but we don’t know yet how many people were badly injured,” Sun said.
Moeun Tola, the executive director for NGO, the Alliance of Labor and Human Rights which sent agents to the scene, said the accident involved 34 workers from Makalot Garments Factory and HOMA Garments Factory.
He said those with less-serious injuries were being cared for at the nearby Tram Khnar Health Center, while the critically injured were sent to a hospital in Phnom Penh.
“We see these accidents happen again and again. Trucks are transporting between 20 to 50 garment workers, which exceed the passenger limit. That’s a huge number.
“Garment workers have to stand. They cannot sit down. Upon arriving at the workplace, they are tired with no energy left to work,” he said.
Tola added that all stakeholders should help find a solution to the transportation woes of garment workers so that they can be seated during the journey.
He also said factory owners should provide additional compensation to what the wounded receive from the National Social Security Fund, which only pays for hospital expenses, he said.