At least five persons died and 11 people were injured in a fire accident at the Cochin Shipyard in Kerala this morning. A blast was heard from a docked drilling vessel , Sagar Bhushan, when around 20 people were working in the ship. It took place in the tank of the ship, which is owned by the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation.
Tuesday being a holiday, no regular workers of the shipyard were present but daily laborers and contract workers. "Preliminary inquiry suggests that the deaths happened due to intense smoke," police sources said. It could have been due to "gas consolidation” (inside the tank)",CSL chairman and Managing Director Madhu S Nair saidUnion Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari has ordered an inquiry into the blast.
Cochin Shipyard in Kerala
A tweet from the minister said "Shocked by the unfortunate blast at Cochin Shipyard where four people have died. My heartfelt condolences to bereaved families". Firefighters were called in and 12 persons were immediately evacuated from the ship following the blast and admitted to various hospitals. A person in serious condition suffered 45 per cent burns. CSL has announced an immediate ex gratia of Rs 10 lakh for the kin of the deceased. All statutory obligations will be followed to support the victims families. the vessel had arrived at Cochin Shipyard on December 7, 2017 for drydock repairs.