The death toll in Tuesday’s oil tanker explosion in Thailand has risen to five with three more workers still unaccounted for.
Three more bodies were recovered from the water on Wednesday after explosions ripped through the oil tanker Smooth Sea 22 during welding operations when it was in a dockyard in Samut Songkhram province.
The three latest victims, all from Myanmar, increased the number of confirmed deaths in the blasts to five, according to Thai daily The Nation.
On 12 January, the Smooth Sea 22 arrived at the dockyard for routine maintenance and reportedly informed the authorities it was still carrying residual bunker oil and diesel oil in its tanks.
The Nation reported that all those confirmed dead and missing were dockworkers. All 17 crew members from the tanker are safe and accounted for.
Cholthee Laohakamwanit, head of the rescue operation, told reporters that rescuers had searched the hull of the tanker but found no survivors or bodies inside.
Samut Songkhram governor Somnuk Phromkeaw has reportedly tasked a local organisation with setting up a command centre to co-ordinate the search operation and to handle complaints from locals whose houses were damaged by the blast.