8 dead, 10 missing in construction site fire in South Korea

Elias Hubbard
April 30, 2020

At least 38 workers were killed and 10 others injured in a fire that broke out at a warehouse construction site in Icheon, Gyeonggi Province, South Korea on Wednesday, Yonhap News Agency reported citing rescue officials.

Smoke rises from a warehouse which is now under construction, after it caught fire, in Icheon, South Korea, April 29, 2020. The blaze was put out later in the evening.

Images from the scene showed several firetrucks and more than a dozen ambulances surrounding the badly damaged structure, which was completely blackened.

All of the victims are construction workers, but crews are still searching to see if there are any more victims.

Eight of the injured are in a serious condition, local officials said.

"This is the power of the Republic of Korea and the South Korean people", he said. Eighteen of the victims were found in the sub-basement, they said. "We presume that an ignition of oil mist caused an explosion and that the sudden combustion gave the workers no chance to escape".

"We are in fact opening a new road", Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun stated when courses resumed in mid-April.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in asked related ministries to do their utmost efforts for the search and rescue operation by mobilising all available resources, presidential blue house spokesman Kang Min-seok said.

South Korea has struggled for decades to improve safety standards and change widespread attitudes that treat safety as subservient to economic progress and convenience.

In December 2017, a fire at a sports center in the central city of Jecheon killed 29 people and wounded 40 others.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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