Pakistan

QUETTA – Twenty six people have so far been perished in a massive fire at Gadani ship-breaking yard last week, officials said Sunday, while over 40 people are still in critical condition.

More than 50 people were wounded in the incident when a gas cylinder exploded and started a fire inside an oil tanker at the Gadani yard in Balochistan.

Six more wounded from the Gadani shipyard explosion have died, so the new toll is now 26, according to the local government officials.

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One of the injured died at home after being discharged from hospital while five others expired in a Quetta hospital, according to Muhammad Hashim, commissioner of Kalat region of which Gadani is a part.

Pakistan has banned all activities at the shipbreaking yard in Gadani and a probe is underway.

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A high-level committee formed by the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to investigate the causes of the fire held its first meeting in the port city of Karachi Saturday and said it would finalise a report within a week.

Industrial accidents are common in Pakistan, with workplaces often forgoing basic safety measures and equipment in the absence of legislation to protect labourers.

A devastating fire at a textile factory in Karachi killed 255 people in 2012.