BST Elastomers chief vows to take full responsibility
Chief of BST Elastomers Co Ltd, a subsidiary of Bangkok Synthetics, expressed full regrets to the Saturday explosion which led to deaths and injuries.
Chaiyot Wongphyat, managing director of BST Elastomers which owns the exploded toluene tank, insisted that toluene - a solvent used in synthetic tyre making process - is non-carcinogenic.
He also showed full responsibility for all damage, particularly the medical costs involved as well as the nearby community.
BST Elastomers has opened the 24-hour Hotline: 038-698-698 #5, for all seeking help. A mobile medical unit would be dispatched to serve villagers living near the facility.
Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand Governor Verapong Chaiperm said that the air quality at the site and nearby communities is under tight control. All tainted water, used in extinguishing the fire, is contained in the waste management system. It is estimated that it should take six months to restore the damaged tank.
He noted that for employees who lost their lives, BST Elastomers are giving their families Bt1 million each on top of insurance compensation, aside from scholarships to their children. For employees of its sub-contractor, their families will receive Bt500,000.
Veerapong estimated that damage could tally upto Bt1.7 billion.
Cnhaiyot and Verapong attended today’s meeting with Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and government agencies.
After the 2-hour meeting, Yingluck ordered for the establishment of a tri-partite committee, to inspect chemical residues at the explosion site in Rayong.
She said that the committee, represented by the government, the private sector and community, will help restore public confidence.
She said that damage at Bangkok Synthetics compound in Map Ta Phut as well as nearby facilities must be thoroughly checked. To restore public confidence, she mentioned a possible review in the laws governing industrial facilities, an extension in community fund and an upgrade in the communications and warning system.
The Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand and BST will be held responsible for the accident, she said, while expressing regrets to all affected.
Pinit Asvasangrat, a representive of Bangkok Hospital Rayong, said that the explosion on Saturday caused 12 deaths and 142 injuries. He assured that at the current level, toluene - a solvent used in synthetic tyre making process - is not deadly but may cause eye and skin irritation as well as irritation to the respiratory system.