Nineteen Vietnamese workers are among nearly 100 injured people in a conflagration and subsequent explosions at a golf factory in Taiwan on Friday, which killed seven others, according to the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The massive blaze broke out at 5:30 pm on Friday at Ming Yang International golf equipment factory, operated by Launch Technologies Co. Ltd. in Pingtung Science Park in Pingtung City, the ministry said on Saturday, citing the Vietnam Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei.
The fire, followed by some powerful blasts that pulled down parts of the factory and trapped many people beneath the rubble, was put under control early Saturday morning.
The catastrophe left seven deaths, including four firefighters and three workers, 98 injured, and three missing, Taiwan News reported.
Among the injured are 19 Vietnamese citizens, including three with serious wounds, who were all taken to local hospitals. Some of them have been discharged after treatment, according to the Department of Overseas Labor Management under the Vietnamese Ministry of Labor, War Invalids, and Social Affairs.
|Smoke rises from a golfing equipment factory, following a fire at the golf equipment factory in Pingtung, Taiwan, September 22, 2023, in this screen grab obtained from a handout video. Photo: Reuters|
The department is cooperating with Taiwanese authorities, the golf factory, and related brokerage companies to take steps to protect the legitimate rights and interests of the Vietnamese victims.
Local authorities have provided an initial allowance of NT$100,000 (US$3,110) for badly injured workers, NT$10,000 ($311) for those with moderate wounds, and NT$5,000 ($155) for those suffering mild injuries, according to the department.
Taiwan’s labor management agency has requested the golf factory and related labor brokerage firms to take measures to support all the victims of the incident.
Brokers have also been asked to help workers get jobs at other employers if they want to.
Taiwanese authorities have opened an investigation into the cause of the fire and the explosions, according to Taiwan News.
Natural gas may have contributed to the blasts, which happened as firefighters were trying to put out the conflagration, AP reported, citing local authorities.