One person is reportedly confirmed dead and nine other crew members were injured after an oil tanker exploded in dock in Thailand, southwest of the capital Bangkok.
Seven people — six Myanmar nationals and one Thai national — remain missing, according to the Bangkok Post, suggesting that the death toll could increase.
The ill-fated oil tanker was in the Ruam Mitr Dockyard on the Mae Klong River in Samut Songkhram province.
Four of the ship’s crew were taken to a local hospital for treatment, while another five suffered only minor injuries, reported the Coconuts news website.
An investigation is under way after the blast on Tuesday morning ripped through the middle of the oil tanker Smooth Sea 22, which was in dock for routine maintenance. Debris from the explosion rained down, reportedly injuring two people living nearby.
Unconfirmed reports claimed that a fire had broken out in the engine compartment during welding operations prior to the large blast and subsequent smaller explosions.
Samut Songkhram Governor Somnuk Phromkeaw told reporters that although the flames had been put out, firefighters are continuing to monitor the situation.
The governor revealed the tanker still had 25,000 litres of fuel oil and 20,000 litres of diesel onboard while it was moored for maintenance, added the Bangkok Post. The Smooth Sea 22 was previously reported to have been empty.
The Smooth Sea 22, the former Cheng Xin 1, is a Thai-flagged small clean tanker that was built in October 2018, according to VesselsValue.