Thailand

Firework maker killed in firework accident in eastern Thailand

A man from Sa Keao province in eastern Thailand was killed in an explosion yesterday while he and his son were making fireworks for a funeral. His son was seriously injured.

At around 12.30pm, officers from Mueang Sa Kaeo Police Station received a report of an explosion at a home in Mueang district. Police travelled to the scene with volunteers from the Sawang So Kaeo Rescue Unit.

The blast instantly killed 71 year old Prasert [surname withheld]. Blood was scattered all over the one-storey wooden house which was destroyed by the explosion.

Police found Prasert’s 40 year old son, Rittiporn, covered head-to-toe in gunpowder. Rittiporn was seriously injured, suffering wounds on his left eyebrow, left hand, left knee, and left ankle. He was taken for urgent treatment at Somdet Phra Yuppharat Sa Keao Hospital.

The deceased had a career making ‘Ploo Talai,’ a type of rocket firework used at funeral ceremonies in Thailand. The firework is usually set off during cremation and spirals upward, emitting a lot of smoke, unlike regular fireworks.

The police investigation so far revealed that Prasert and his son were sitting inside the house making Ploo Talai when a loud explosion occurred at around 12.30pm.

The explosion tore through the whole house and TVs and other objects were left scattered everywhere.

Police said at this stage they are unsure whether Prasert’s firework factory was operating legally or not. In Thailand, anyone producing or selling fireworks must first obtain a license and comply with many rules outlined in the Firearms, Ammunition, Explosives, Fireworks, and Imitation Fireworks Act (1947).

Prasert’s body will undergo an autopsy at Sa Kaeo Hospital and will then be returned to his family for religious ceremonies to be undertaken.

A week ago, one person was killed and three more were burned in an explosion at a fireworks factory in the Mueang district of Suphan Buri province in central Thailand.

Last month, 12 people were injured by illegal fireworks set off at Loy Krathong celebrations in Nakhon Phanom province in northeast Thailand.

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leah

Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.