Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Workers return in wake of factory floor collapse

Workers return in wake of factory floor collapse

Workers return in wake of factory floor collapse

Employees working at a Takeo province garment factory where part of the floor gave way beneath them last month were back on the job yesterday, though in different buildings at the large Bati district complex.

Oeur Pich, whose left leg was injured at the scene, was among those returning to new work stations yesterday.

“I am still scared when I see the building where I used to work,” Pich told the Post after her first shift back. “Luckily, we are not allowed to work in that building.”

About 800 workers fled Building B of Nishiku’s complex at about 9:30am on October 21 when part of the ground floor near the entrance caved in, leaving the front quarter of the factory floor tilting toward the hole that materialised.

Several people working at the time were pinned under their sewing machines, leaving at least four, all women, with minor injuries.

On the day of the collapse, Nishiku director of human resources Chan Monika – who could not be reached yesterday – said the portion that collapsed stood over a 40-by-20-metre reservoir and had not been reinforced.

A preliminary police investigation that day concluded that lack of reinforcement likely led to the floor giving way.

Jill Tucker, technical adviser for the International Labour Organization’s Better Factories Cambodia (BFC), yesterday said photographs from the scene seemed consistent with this assessment.

Specialists should look at the other buildings at Nishiku to gauge safety, she added.

“It would be good for them to bring a structural engineer to assess the other buildings in the complex,” Tucker said. “There’s no building code [in Cambodia], right now, it’s being written.”

So far, no Nishiku employees working in the building during the collapse have filed lawsuits, nor has the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers’ Democratic Union (C.CAWDU) – which represents many of their employees, C.CAWDU legal officer Seang Yoth said yesterday.

But C.CAWDU and labour rights group Solidarity Center are monitoring the case to see whether workers should file suit, Yoth said.

“C.CAWDU and [Solidarity Center] are monitoring to ensure the National Social Security Fund properly pays compensation and medical bills for those injured,” Yoth explained.

An NSSF staffer was reached yesterday afternoon, but told a Post reporter that his boss could not be contacted.

MOST VIEWED

  • Reports: Rainsy barred from Jakarta flight

    Sam Rainsy was on Wednesday refused entry to a flight from Malaysia to Indonesia, media reported late on Wednesday. The “acting president” of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party’s announced return to the Kingdom on Independence Day on Saturday failed to occur. Rainsy

  • Government studying EU’s preliminary report on EBA

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation on Wednesday said the government was studying the EU Commission’s preliminary report on the human rights situation in the Kingdom that could lead to a suspension of access to its “Everything But Arms” (EBA) agreement. The

  • Phnom Penh International Airport wins award as passenger traffic soars

    The Phnom Penh International Airport has been awarded Best Asia Pacific Regional Airport 2019 for its sustained high growth in passenger traffic in recent years. The award was presented by the Capa Centre for Aviation (Capa) – a world-leading and trusted organisation that provides market intelligence to

  • Gov’t: Rainsy’s ‘coup plot’ a failure

    The government on Wednesday commended the Kingdom’s security forces for thwarting the attempted “coup plot” by former opposition leader Sam Rainsy through his announced return to Cambodia on November 9. The comments came as Rainsy, the “acting president” of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue

  • PM responds to Rainsy ticket claims

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday expressed frustration over claims by Sam Rainsy that he had altered Rainsy’s ticket with Thai Airways to prevent him boarding his November 7 flight to Thailand, from where he had claimed he would enter Cambodia. Hun Sen made the

  • Chinese tourists lead international visitors

    Chinese tourists again topped the list of foreign visitors to Cambodia during the first nine months of this year, with the Ministry of Tourism on Wednesday reporting a 30 per cent increase on the same period last year. The Kingdom received 4.81 million international tourists in that