15 workers burn as boiler blast at kitchenware factory

15 workers burn as boiler blast at kitchenware factory

Boiler blast

At least 15 employees suffered burns when a boiler exploded at a kitchenware manufacturing company in Harohalli area on Tuesday. Three of the employees are critical.

The police said the explosion happened around 3 pm on Tuesday at the Stovekraft Limited in Harohalli Industrial Area, Kanakapura taluk, on the city outskirts.

Workers heard a loud explosion and found those close to the boiler being knocked to the ground with burns. They were initially admitted to the burns ward of the Victoria Hospital and were later shifted to the Mahaveer Jain Hospital.

The three critically injured employees are Pushpalatha, Sabarish and Vinod. While one of them suffered 90% burns, two have 50% and the rest have around 20% to 30% burns.

Around 1,500 employees work in three shifts in various divisions of the company as cookers, stoves and mixers.

Police sources said the boiler exploded near the cooker unit and the victims were working close to the boiler. The company staff acted quickly to shift the victims to hospital. The fire and emergency department and the Harohalli police rushed to the spot and held an inquiry.

The police and the fire personnel have sent samples from the explosion to the forensic lab to ascertain if the blast was caused by a short circuit, over heating or other causes. The police registered a case against the company under IPC Section 337, causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others.

Stovekraft chairman and MD Rajendra Gandhi described the incident as unfortunate and unexpected.

"We are deeply saddened by the situation. Fifteen of the injured employees were immediately taken to Victoria Hospital for their first diagnosis and later in the day were shifted to a private hospital," Gandhi said.

He said the company will pay for the employees' medical expenses. Gandhi also said the company is holding an internal investigation to determine the cause and will put safety measures in place.