Search continues for worker missing from battery plant fire

Firefighters search for a missing worker at a battery plant in Hwaseong, Gyeonggi Province, after a fire broke out, June 24. Yonhap

Rescue workers continued searching Tuesday for a worker still missing after a fire at a lithium battery plant in Hwaseong, south of Seoul, one of the worst chemical plant accidents in the country.

At least 22 workers, mostly Chinese nationals, were killed in the fire that gutted lithium battery maker Aricell’s plant in Hwaseong, 45 kilometers south of Seoul, the previous day.

Eight others also sustained injuries, two of them seriously.

With one more worker remaining unaccounted for from the fire, the search operation has continued overnight inside the scorched plant.

Fire authorities plan to mobilize 100 personnel and two rescue dogs during the day to continue the search.

All deceased victims were found on the second floor of the plant, where the fire first started, while they were inspecting and packaging finished battery products.

17 of the victims, including the missing worker, were Chinese, while five were Koreans, and one was Laotian, police said, updating the initial count of two Koreans by fire authorities.

A team of police, firefighters, forensic workers and other government officials is set to launch a joint investigation at the fire site during the day to determine the cause of the accident.

Police have requested autopsies on the bodies to determine the cause of death.

The identities of only two Koreans among the victims have been confirmed so far, as the bodies of the others were severely destroyed in the fire and are beyond recognition.

“We plan to confirm the victims’ identities by collecting DNA from their bodies,” a police official said, adding that the process may 카지노사이트킹 take some time because they were mostly foreigners

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