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Fire at Gadani shipbreaking yard in Hub. — DawnNews
Fire at Gadani shipbreaking yard in Hub. — DawnNews

At least five people were killed and one other injured when a fire broke out in a ship parked on plot 60 of the Gadani shipbreaking yard in Hub on Monday, police sources said.

The ship belonged to ex-chairman of the Ship-breaking Yard Association, Rizwan Diwan Farooq, police said. Farooq was detained in Hub city after fleeing the shipyard when the fire broke out.

Over 55 labourers were working on the out-of-service LPG ship when the blaze started, police said.

Officials from the environment department said a chemical 'foam' present inside the ship was responsible for the fire.

They said all combustibles need to be removed from a ship before work is started, but the foam was not removed in this case, which signalled neglect.

Police sources pointed out that this was the same ship that caught fire in December last year.

According to the police, rescue workers were still looking for three people; Bashir Mehmood Dani, president of the Ship Workers Union, claimed that the number of missing people is eight.


Thousands of labourers work in perilous conditions, often for a pittance, at Gadani's shipbreaking yards.

In November 2016, 26 people had been killed and 58 others injured during a series of explosions that occurred during work on an unused oil tanker at the yard.

Fires and accidents are common and the air is polluted, often causing health problems for the workers, who perform the often dangerous work of extracting ferrous and non-ferrous metals, steel pipes and valves, electricity cables, machinery and wood from derelict ships.

There is no government agency to monitor and evaluate the operations at the yard and there is a lack of health and safety standards for the dismantling and recycling of materials and metals.

Comments (18) Closed

M. Emad Jan 09, 2017 12:34pm

Pakistan, China have poor industrial safety standards and measures.

Black Indian Jan 09, 2017 12:35pm

No lessons taken...

SDA Jan 09, 2017 12:56pm

Sorry to hear that again and pray that all workers are safe. Please fix the problem ASAP.

Hamza Farooq Jan 09, 2017 01:10pm

When screams of innocent fell on deaf ears.

Dr. SalariA, Aamir Ahmad Jan 09, 2017 01:20pm

What a great tragedy?

Hassan (Karachi) Jan 09, 2017 02:45pm

"According to police sources, it is the same ship that caught fire in December last year."

"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

Bewildered Jan 09, 2017 03:02pm

Has our government ever thought to do some legislation to prevent these poor laborers from being cannon fodder in filling out the pockets of those who hire them and don't care about their safety and well being?

A law need to be enacted to make sure that contractors or owners of this business must ensure safe process of ship-breaking activities.

Hopeful Jan 09, 2017 03:21pm

This business must be regulated by strict environmental and occupational hazard laws to ensure the safety of poor laborers. In fact, government should enforce a law where non-unionized workers are not allowed to work in ship-breaking business.

I would love to see the contractor or owner of this ship behind the bar.

Arshad Jan 09, 2017 03:20pm

When human life become cheaper then $$$, this what happens......

perfect profiteer Jan 09, 2017 03:21pm

We want to see the owner of this ship behind the bars. Only this kind of example can put fear of God into the hearts of "profit making machines" of ship breaking business.

Merchant Jan 09, 2017 04:49pm

This clearly shows that Pakistani government and instituitions do not value human life. This is the second disaster of its kind in as my months.

javed Jan 09, 2017 05:24pm

@M. Emad, the news is about Gadani, why drag China into it. Do they mention Pakistan every time something happens there?

javed Jan 09, 2017 05:28pm

In the accompanying photograph the letters 'L P G' can be seen clearly. Legislation is urgently needed to clear vessels of hazardous materials BEFORE work is started on them.

AAN Jan 09, 2017 05:36pm

All i can say sorry for the poor unfortunately there is no respect for poor man life except in case of mishap some money. Where is the system which will block these accidents. Very unfortunate.

Fahim Jan 09, 2017 08:11pm

Unfortunately, I am afraid this would continue to happen, people will die and it will be business as usual.

Pak Patriot Jan 09, 2017 08:18pm

Another fire at Gadani, the third in the last six months. Does anybody care ?

This demonstrates the utter incompetence of the Baluchistan govt. What measures have been put in place, by the Ship breaking industry to safeguard the safety of the ship breaker ?

Since the Ship breakers association, do not give any importance to the safety of the lives of the ship breakers, these fires will continue unabated and tax payers taxes will be paying big time to put out the fires. Therefore until safeguards are in place by the Ship breakers association, it would be fitting for this association and the owner of the ship to pay the local administration for the services rendered by the Fire Department.

Jk Jan 09, 2017 09:00pm

There is no value for life. Throw little money at survivors and go on with your own merry way.

hjjkh Jan 10, 2017 12:21am

god bless