A team of garment and footwear industry experts have begun a programme to train workers and employers in boiler safety.
The scheme is a collaboration between the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia, the Industry and Handicrafts Ministry and the Ministry of Labour.
GMAC deputy secretary-general Kaing Monika said three workshops have been carried out so far.
One in Phnom Penh, with more than 100 participants, one in Sihanoukville with about 80 attendees, and one in Svay Rieng province’s Bavet town, which attracted 50 participants.
“The workshops are not restricted to only GMAC members, but open for people from other industries to join as well,” Mr Monika said.
He said the workshops explained both the legal framework and requirements around boiler safety, and the technical details on how to operate a boiler in a safe manner, including safety equipment and tools, the time-frames for checking the various parts, as well as external and internal maintenance.
“We did this to provide people with the necessary knowledge and relevant information to help improve the safety level of boiler operation in all our member factories,” Mr Monika said.
In October, seven workers were injured in boiler explosions at two different factories in Phnom Penh’s Por Senchey district.
In April, two boiler explosions in Meanchey district killed two and injured four. Six workers were injured the same month in Poipet.
In March, one garment worker died and seven were injured in an explosion at Zhen Tai garment factory in Phnom Penh’s Sen Sok district.
Pav Sina, president of the Collective Union of Movement of Workers, said industry figures and employers too often only take action after an accident has already happened.
“I think it is a bit late, but I support GMAC and the Labour Ministry for disseminating training about boiler safety,” said Mr Sina.
He added that all employers must check boilers at their factories, because if they are old they could be at risk of exploding.
“Factories should replace old boilers. If they continue to use old boilers, they are more likely to explode one day,” he said.