Pattaya Daily News

26 March 2014 :: 16:03:57 pm 83445

Deadly Gas Killed 4 Workers in Phuket Sewer

Four Thai workmen died this morning (March 26) from suffocation after they went down into a sewer on Srisuthat Rd on the edge of Phuket Town to clean out the pipe.
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PHUKET – March 26, 2014 : It has been revealed that the four Thai workmen who died this morning (March 26) in a sewer on Srisuthat Rd on the edge of Phuket Town, had been exposed to a high concentration of deadly hydrogen sulphide gas.

Muang Police received a call at 10:30am that the four men were down inside the Phuket City sewer near Namchai Ocean Transport, and close to the Koh Sirey bridge, and were not responding to calls from their colleagues.

One of the Kusoldharm Foundation rescuers, 25-year-old Jasesada Janpen, arriving at the site, climbed down into the tube, about a metre in diameter and three metres underground to try to pull out the four men but was quickly rendered unconscious himself by the deadly hydrogen sulphide, which had filled the sewer.

The rescuers used a large fan to try to blow enough air into the pipe to allow them to pull their colleague out. After performing CPR on him, they rushed him off to the ICU at Vachira Phuket Hospital.

Three other Kusoldharm volunteers needed to be put on oxygen; even though they did not go down the hole, they were all suffering from inhalation of the gas.

Police contacted the Phuket Department of Disaster Prevention & Mitigation to request breathing equipment suitable for handling the emergency. Once they had strapped on the tanks and masks they went down and, tying ropes to the four men, pulled them out one by one.

This took more than ten minutes but the four, who had by now been in the sewer for two hours, were all dead. Police named them as Suchet Chitchonlatarn, Tawat Chitchonlatarn, Apisit Tipprasong and Sanan Buachum, who were all working for Eastern Thai Consulting 1992 Co, contracted by the city to take care of sewers.

Pimuk Sornmee, a manager of the company, told police, “Six workers were sent to the sewer today to close off this section and to clean and maintain the water pump.

“Before they started work, they opened up the cover to allow the smell and gas to escape. But when the first man went down, the gas seemed to build up again, making him unconscious. The second, third, and fourth men all went down to help those who had gone before, but succumbed to the gas.”

One of the two who did not go down into the sewer told the police a similar story, revealing that the workers had left the cover open for 30 minutes to vent the gas. Mr Tawat was first to go into the sewer, but within 10 minutes he was unconscious. It was only after three others had descended into the pipe and met the same fate that the workers called police and the rescue service.

Hydrogen sulphide is a colourless gas with a stink of rotten eggs, and is a common by-product of the breakdown of organic matter in enclosed spaces such as sewers.

In higher concentrations, it can seriously disrupt the nervous system, leading quickly to death. Those who survive may suffer brain damage.

View the original story on The Phuket News

Category : Thailand News

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