The sports category has moved to a new website.
ADVERTISEMENT

10 killed, dozens hurt in garment factory blast

A fire service official, Palash Modak said the mishap happened late on Monday at a plant owned by Multifabs Limited, a Bangladeshi company on the outskirts of Dhaka.

10 killed, dozens hurt in Bangladesh garment factory blast

A fire service official, Palash Modak said the mishap happened late on Monday at a plant owned by Multifabs Limited, a Bangladeshi company on the outskirts of the capital, Dhaka.

The firm supplies knitted apparel to clients in Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Russia, Spain, Netherlands and Britain, including to Littlewoods, one of Britain’s oldest retail brands.

Modak said: "nine people were killed in the blast and one died in hospital."

ADVERTISEMENT

The company said the plant was functioning well and the boiler, procured from Germany, had just been serviced.The factory had been shut for 10 days for the Eid period at the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and was

being readied to resume operations from Tuesday.

"This was an accident. Everything was fine," Mahiuddin Faruqui, company chairman and managing director, told

Reuters.

"The boiler was running well. After servicing when workers were trying to restart it, it went off,” he said.

ADVERTISEMENT

Bangladesh’s garment-making industry, the biggest in the world after China’s, employs four million people and

generates 80 percent of its export earnings.

Multifabs started operating in 1992, and reached 70 million dollars in exports in 2016, supplying European brands such as fashion chain Lindex, which is part of Finnish retailer Stockmann and Aldi, Faruqui said.

Bangladesh’s garment sector came under scrutiny after the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory complex in 2013

that killed more than 1,100 people, and a fire at a garment factory in 2012 that killed 112 workers.

ADVERTISEMENT

Activists had long criticized many retailers for failing to improve working conditions in their supply chains,

with long hours, low pay, poor safety standards and workers not being allowed to form trade unions.

The Rana Plaza disaster sparked demands for greater safety and put the onus to act on foreign companies sourcing

clothing from Bangladesh.

Two international coalitions have been formed to help fund improvements to building and fire safety at thousands

ADVERTISEMENT

of garment factories across Bangladesh.

One of those, the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety, said fire incidents in Bangladeshi factories fell to 30

in 2015 from 250 in 2012.

The alliance represents most North American importers of readymade garments, including

Canadian Tire Corp, Gap Inc, Sears Holdings Corp, Target Corp and Wal-Mart Stores

ADVERTISEMENT

The Multifabs unit hit by the blast turned out 100,000 pieces of garment a day, generating around $6 million of

revenue a month, factory and operations director Mesba Faruqui told Reuters.

He said the boiler had been working for about an hour when it exploded.

“We are surprised and saddened … every year around twice or thrice the boiler is serviced by our men and men

from Germany,” he said.

ADVERTISEMENT

Another group representing global brands and retailers, called the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in

Bangladesh, said an independent inspection conducted on March 28, 2015, found that Multifabs’ boiler room was

not separated by fire-rated construction.

It said in a report there were openings and "penetrations"  from its dyeing shed and that an inspector had

ordered that the problems be fixed within three months.

ADVERTISEMENT

Mahiuddin Faruqui said the company had implemented those recommendations within that timeframe.

Chief government inspector Mohammad Mannan said his department had inspected the Multifabs boiler a year

ago and that the next inspection was due this month.

JOIN OUR PULSE COMMUNITY!

Unblock notifications in browser settings.
ADVERTISEMENT

Eyewitness? Submit your stories now via social or:

Email: news@pulselive.co.ke

Recommended articles

Details of Ambassador Daniel Koikai's work at the UN and several other countries

Details of Ambassador Daniel Koikai's work at the UN and several other countries

Ichung'wa learns tough lesson after etiquette lapse while meeting Ruto [Video]

Ichung'wa learns tough lesson after etiquette lapse while meeting Ruto [Video]

CS Kindiki announces Eid al-Adha public holiday

CS Kindiki announces Eid al-Adha public holiday

Policewoman burns her policeman husband to death over gambling addiction

Policewoman burns her policeman husband to death over gambling addiction

Details of senior cop gunned down at Makadara Law Courts & CJ Koome's reaction

Details of senior cop gunned down at Makadara Law Courts & CJ Koome's reaction

Judiciary reveals what transpired before magistrate Monica Kivuti was shot

Judiciary reveals what transpired before magistrate Monica Kivuti was shot

How former finance minister lost budget briefcase after drinking spree

How former finance minister lost budget briefcase after drinking spree

Police officer shoots magistrate during court session

Police officer shoots magistrate during court session

Blog: Treasury CS reveals how much gov't will borrow to finance 2024/25 budget
Live

Blog: Treasury CS reveals how much gov't will borrow to finance 2024/25 budget

ADVERTISEMENT