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Burned-down Can Tho garment factory had 18,600l of oil in basement: fire dept

Friday, March 31, 2017, 15:26 GMT+7

New information regarding an out-of-control blaze last week at the Kwong Lung Meko Company factory, located in the southern city of Can Tho was announced during a press conference on Thursday.

The fire began at the facility in Tra Noc Industrial Park in Binh Thuy District at around 9:15 am on March 23 and flames devastated the building until 11:30 am the following day.

On Sunday evening, just four days after the original incident, the blazed reignited.

According to Major General Tran Thi Ngoc Dep, director of the municipal Department of Firefighting Police, the fire was “extremely complicated.”

One week before the accident, a large amount of material was brought to the company in order to fulfill an upcoming export shipment that would require round-the-clock operations.

The firm was too focused on profits and overlooked fire safety requirements, Maj. Gen. Dep assessed.

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The fire breaks out at Kwong Lung Meko Company on the night of March 23, 2017. Photo: Tuoi Tre 

Firefighting units discovered flammable materials including feathers, fabric, cardboards, and plastic at the facility.

About 26 firefighting vehicles and dozens of officers were dispatched to the scene to extinguish the flames.

“We managed to ensure the safety of nearly 1,000 employees and staff at the company," the official said.

"We were also able to prevent the flames from reaching 18,600 liters of oil the company had stored in its basement."

She added that managers of the company had failed to mention the oil to competent authorities.

The Criminal Science Institute under the Ministry of Public Security collected evidence from the scene to identify the cause of the blaze.

According to Maj. Gen. Dep, about 80 percent of Kwong Lung Meko Company’s assets remain intact and the firm’s VND1.1 billion (US$48,048) annual insurance policy paid out VND555 billion ($24.2 million) to cover the damaged property.

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