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Phone could have sparked mine blast: police

May 30. 2018
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By Suwannee Bunditsak
The Nation

An explosion at a gypsum mine that killed a certified explosive expert may be caused by an incoming phone call, Surat Thani’s Governor Wutchawut Jintoh said on Wednesday.

The explosive in the mine of Akkarapat Mining Company killed Sanit Chukaew, 43, the firm’s explosives expert, who was certified by the Industry Ministry.

A woman from Myanmar, identified only as Kee, who was Sanit’s assistant, was injured from the blast.

Police and rescue workers spent about five hours before managing to retrieve Sanit’s body from the mine, mainly because they did not know where the three others explosives placed by Sanit had been planted. 

The governor who visited the scene claimed that the accident may have been because Sanit was carrying his mobile phone.

“Somebody may call him at that moment and the explosive went off,” said the governor.

He added that the three others bombs are to be retrieved today.

Meanwhile, Pol Col Panumart Pattanarat, chief of the police bomb squad, recommended Adul Akkaranit, owner of the company, use ropes instead of staff members during the night.

Police will destroy the remaining explosives by using wires to trigger them.

Adul told police that he was informed that Sanit’s mobile phone had some problems.

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