Thai politics Thailand

Blast at Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate Kills 12

2012 05 06 map ta phut blast

Reuters reports today:

Thai authorities were investigating on Sunday a blast that killed 12 people and wounded at least 105 at one of the world’s biggest petrochemical hubs.

Explosions sparked a fire at a chemical factory at the sprawling Map Ta Phut complex – Thailand’s biggest industrial estate – on Saturday, forcing the evacuation of thousands of people and workers from the area in Rayong province, about 180 km (110 miles) east of Bangkok.

The Bangkok Synthetics plant, 20-percent owned by Thailand’s largest industrial group, Siam Cement Pcl, produces butadiene and other raw materials used in the manufacturing of synthetic rubbers and plastic resins.

The blaze has been extinguished and many evacuees have returned home, said Verapong Chaiperm, governor of the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand, confirming the number of dead and wounded.

“The evacuation order has been cancelled while other nearby buildings and factories around the area are under security checks,” he said in an interview.

Authorities were investigating the cause of the explosions and were watching closely for the environmental impact of the spread of the chemicals, said Verapong

The Bangkok Post has more here and here.

A few years ago, as you’ll recall, Map Ta Phut was the focal point of a lawsuit about pollution and the Thai constitution’s environmental protection requirements.

(All emphasis mine.)

(Image: Bangkok Post.)

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