Over 120 workers hospitalized after factory explosion in Turkey’s northwest

Over 120 workers hospitalized after factory explosion in Turkey’s northwest

Over 120 workers hospitalized after factory explosion in Turkey’s northwest

AA photo

A total of 123 workers have been hospitalized after an explosion in a paint-chemical factory in the Çerkezköy district of the northwestern province of Tekirdağ. 

The workers were taken to hospitals amid fear of smoke poisoning, after which 118 were discharged. The treatment of the five others was ongoing on April 12. 

Fire erupted at a resin-producing factory belonging to the Boytek company in the organized industrial zone of Çerkezköy, with the fire department and a number of ambulances dispatched to the scene. A total of 40 workers were initially hospitalized due to smoke poisoning and workers in the factories nearby were sent to their homes after the incident. 

Çerkezköy District Governor Atilla Selami Abban, Mayor Vahap Akay, Tekirdağ Mayor Kadir Albayrak, district police chief Murat Ogan, and organized industrial zone chief Mehmet Özdoğan carried out investigations at the scene. 

Speaking about the incident, Abban said a chemical leakage was “out of the question.” 

“Smoke emerged due to a boiler getting extremely hot after a chemical reaction. Things are now under control and cooling efforts are also now over. The Environment and Urbanization Provincial Directorate is carrying out examinations,” he told state-run Anadolu Agency. 

The Tekirdağ Municipality issued a statement saying locals in the area should beware alarmist reports in several media outlets. 

“A fire erupted in the paint-chemical factory at around 6:30 a.m. on April 12 due to a technical malfunction and the fire was brought under control,” a written statement from the municipality read, adding that Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) made the necessary measurements in the area and no harmful substance was found. 

Albayrak, meanwhile, said a majority of the workers had been dispatched after ambulatory treatment. 

A statement was also released by Boytek, which said the cause of the incident is being investigated.

“According to the information we obtained from hospital authorities, the workers received minor treatment for basic respiratory problems. Our greatest consolation is that no lives were lost. But we apologize to the public, our industrialists, and all the workers in the area because of the concerns formed after the incident,” the statement read. 

Speaking to state-run Anadolu Agency, Dr. Burç Baykaran said controls were made on asthma patients and pregnant women. 

“It looks like this was smoke poisoning. We told the patients to rest for a while,” Baykaran said. 

Another statement was released from the Çerkezköy Organized Industrial Zone Directorate, which said messages regarding warnings to pregnant women to not breastfeed their babies are “false.”