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Laos: One dead, 20 others injured following rock-blasting operation at Chinese-backed cement factory

One died and 20 others were injured following a rock-blasting operation at a Chinese-backed cement factory, Ket Thao Lao Co. Ltd.. Local authorities attributed the accident to the misuse of stockpiled explosives.

Business and Human Rights Resource Centre could not invite Ket Thao Lao to respond to the allegations in the media reports due to the lack of any publicly available information about the company. If the company wishes respond, its representatives may get in touch with Betty Yolanda, Asia regional manager, (yolanda [at] business-humanrights.org) or Golda Benjamin, Southeast Asia representative, (benjamin[at]business-humanrights.org).

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Author: Radio Free Asia



由Ket Thao Lao co. Ltd所有的工厂发生的事故,造成一人死亡,20多人受伤,爆炸产生的碎片远达琅勃拉邦省Nam Bak区附近的Phonemany村庄,破坏80间房屋。


… 村民怀疑该公司使用了比平时更多的炸药,因为爆炸力量似乎更大。


...当Ket Thao Lao在2019年1月购买工厂时,这名中国男子提议续签合同,但遭到拒绝,因为新业主希望通过内部爆破降低成本。




工商部副主任Khamtanh Somphanvilay说...“炸开岩石时,发生了意外。 这是由于负责爆破的技术人员的粗心和技术过失,” Khamtanh Somphanvilay说。


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Author: Radio Free Asia


由Ket Thao Lao co. Ltd所有的工廠發生的事故,造成一人死亡,20多人受傷,爆炸產生的碎片遠達瑯勃拉邦省Nam Bak區附近的Phonemany村莊,破壞80間房屋。


… 村民懷疑該公司使用了比平時更多的炸藥,因為爆炸力量似乎更大。


...當Ket Thao Lao在2019年1月購買工廠時,這名中國男子提議續簽合同,但遭到拒絕,因為新業主希望通過內部爆破降低成本。




工商部副主任Khamtanh Somphanvilay說...“炸開岩石時,發生了意外。 這是由於負責爆破的技術人員的粗心和技術過失,” Khamtanh Somphanvilay說。


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Author: Radio Free Asia



琅勃拉邦省Nam Bak县Phonemany村的爆炸也摧毁了房屋和车辆。



一位村民补充说:“中国工厂从不事先警告村民爆炸的危险。” [...]





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Author: Radio Free Asia



瑯勃拉邦省Nam Bak縣Phonemany村的爆炸也摧毀了房屋和車輛。



一位村民補充說:“中國工廠從不事先警告村民爆炸的危險。” [...]





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8 October 2019

Lao Authorities Ban Access to Hospitalized Victims of Deadly Blasting Accident

Author: Ounkeo Souksavanh & Eugene Whong, Radio Free Asia

9 October 2019

Authorities are restricting access to hospitalized victims of a rock-blasting accident that occurred...at a Chinese-backed cement plant located in northern Laos, and several people were arrested following a blast caused by the apparent misuse of stockpiled explosives, local authorities said.

The accident at the plant, owned by Ket Thao Lao co. Ltd, claimed the life of one victim and injured 20 others, when debris from an explosion tore through nearby Phonemany village in Luang Prabang province’s Nam Bak district...damaging 80 houses.

...[E]ight people, including one Chinese national were seriously injured.

...[V]illagers suspected the company used more explosives than usual because the explosion seemed more powerful.


...When Ket Thao Lao bought the factory in January 2019, the Chinese man proposed a renewal of their contract but was turned down because the new owners wanted to reduce costs by doing the blasting in-house.

“The new owner found that the Chinese [subcontractor] owned 12 tons of explosive materials in four spots on the mountain, so the new owner told the subcontractor to destroy the explosive materials, in a memorandum of understanding that holds the subcontractor responsible for any damages,” the notice said.

The blast that caused the accident was orchestrated by the subcontractor. They were attempting to detonate the remaining explosives.

The notice from the department identified the detained individuals as the Chinese subcotractor and his family.

Khamtanh Somphanvilay, deputy director of the commerce and industry department...said...“When the rock was blasted, the incident occurred unexpectedly. This is [due to] the carelessness and technical fault of the technician in charge of the blasting,” Khamtanh Somphanvilay said.

The cement plant donated 10 million kip (slightly more than $1100) to help the victims of the accident.

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5 October 2019

Chinese Cement Factory Blast Kills 1, Injures 20 in Laos

Author: Ounkeo Souksavanh & Matthew Pennington, Radio Free Asia

6 October 2019

An explosion...caused by rock blasting for a Chinese cement plant in northern Laos tore through a village, killing at least one person and injuring more than 20 others, residents said.

Houses and vehicles were also wrecked by the blast in Phonemany village, Nam Bak district, Luang Prabang province.

The explosion was much more powerful than usual from rock blasting at the area and it appears that villagers were not warned in advance....


A villager...added: "The Chinese factory never warns villagers of the blasts in advance." [...]

Villagers said at least one person was killed and more than 20 were injured.


The operator of the Chinese cement plant that has been running for some years near the village could not immediately be reached for comment.

The rapid proliferation of Chinese-owned industrial, hydropower, mining and tourism projects in Laos has caused friction with local residents over pollution, loss of farmland and economic compensation for displaced villagers.

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