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Investigation Launched into Fatal Crane Collapse at Chinese-Owned Steel Factory in Rayong, Thailand

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A devastating crane collapse at the Sin Ker Yuan Company Limited steel factory in Rayong’s Pluak Daeng district has prompted a formal investigation by a House committee on industries. The tragic incident, which resulted in the deaths of seven workers, including one Chinese and six Myanmar nationals, occurred while the tower crane was being dismantled.

In response to the fatalities, approximately 400 workers staged a protest demanding compensation, leading to the company agreeing to pay 1.6 million baht to each victim’s family. An additional protest involving 200 workers advocating for better welfare benefits concluded with assurances from the Social Security Fund regarding their eligibility for benefits.

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Akkaradej Wongpithakroj, chair of the House panel and MP for the United Thai Nation Party, expressed deep concerns over the incident, suggesting that it was not isolated. He indicated that the investigation would also look into other alleged violations by Chinese-owned firms in Thailand, such as unauthorized construction, unregistered business activities, pollution, and illegal transportation of mineral waste.

Pending the outcome of the investigation, Akkaradej raised the possibility of recommending that the government revoke the investment visas of firms found guilty of these violations, highlighting the severity of the potential infractions and the Thai authorities’ commitment to enforcing regulations.

This probe underscores the growing scrutiny on foreign operations in Thailand, particularly concerning safety standards and legal compliance in industrial activities.

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