image source: Wikimedia Commons (public domain)

On Sunday 12 people were killed and 129 injured in a fire at a chemical plant in eastern Thailand, reports Pakistan’s Daily Times.

Just over two years ago I posted about Thailand’s Map Ta Phut industrial port in Rayong province and the environmental pollution the Thai petrochemical hub has wrought on the local population.

This latest deadly incident at Map Ta Phut caused hundreds of residents to evacuate the area, though loud rains prevented many people from hearing the calls to leave. This prompted Thailand’s industrial minister to call for an upgrade of Map Ta Phut’s warning systems.

From the Bangkok Post:

Charnvit Thongkhamkhiew, a foreman at the factory who witnessed the incident, said the blasts were so powerful that a pickup truck was lifted about 10m off the ground. Mr Charnvit went to Rayong Hospital to claim the body of his close friend Sanom Noichamnong, 53.

The company that owns the factory, BST Group, has promised to pay medical costs and compensation to those affected by the disaster.

Go to Asian Correspondent for information and commentary about the political implications and fallout from the explosion at Map Ta Phut