Bangladesh garment factory fire kills 8 as collapse toll hits 950

The fire engulfed the lower floors of the 11-storey factory,which had closed for the day.

Written by Associated Press | Dhaka | Published: May 10, 2013 4:13:46 am

A fire fed by huge piles of acrylic products used to make sweaters killed eight people at a Bangladesh garment factory,barely two weeks after a collapse at another garment factory building where the death toll was approaching 1,000 Thursday.

The dead in Wednesday night’s fire included a ruling-party politician and a top official in the country’s powerful clothing manufacturers’ trade group. But unlike the collapse at the Rana Plaza building,which was blamed on shoddy construction and disregard for safety regulations,the Tung Hai Sweater factory appeared to have conformed to building codes. A top fire official said the deaths were caused by panic and bad luck.

“They are really unfortunate,” said Mamun Mahmud,deputy director,fire services.

The fire engulfed the lower floors of the 11-storey factory,which had closed for the day.

The building appeared on first inspection to have been properly built,though fire inspectors would conduct further checks,he said. It had two stairwells in the front and an emergency exit in the back,he said. Those inside probably panicked when they saw smoke and then died of suffocation.

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