Samut Prakan –
A Thai crew member was killed and another was injured after a boat containing 3.2 million liters of crude oil exploded while traveling along the Chao Praya River in the Phra Samut Chedi District of Samut Prakan Sunday afternoon, March 27th.
Water police, rescuers, and volunteers arrived at the scene around 1:40 P.M. after being notified of the explosion with deaths and injuries. The boat named ‘Ampha 8’, carrying 3,200,000 liters of crude oil, was found floating in the middle of the Chao Phraya River with significant smoke and flames burning from the bow of the ship.
Relevant officials spent more than three hours extinguishing the fire. 14 out of 16 crew members were safely rescued. One of the crew members was injured and transferred to the nearest hospital for treatment and another was killed instantly and fell into the water due to the explosion. Both crew members were not immediately identified.
Boat captain Pongchai Singhawankultold the police that the boat was traveling from Koh Si Chang in Chonburi to deliver crude oil at Bangchak’s oil depot. When arriving at the scene, the team started an electric boat winch to anchor the vessel and the explosion immediately sparked.
The captain expected that an oil gas leak evaporated inside which caused the spark and an explosion when the winch motor started.
Police officers would continue an examination under the cooperation of forensic science officers to identify the exact cause of the incident before legal proceedings. Oil was not, according to relevant authorities, at risk of leaking into the river.
Photo Courtesy: Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM)
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