5 Killed, 11 Injured In Blast Onboard Docked ONGC Vessel At Cochin Shipyard

| February 13 , 2018 , 14:40 IST

At least 5 people were killed and 11 others injured when a blast took place in a docked vessel at the Cochin Shipyard in Kerala on Tuesday, sparking a fire.

The docked vessel 'Sagar Bhushan', owned by the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) was undergoing repairs at the dry dock of the shipyard when the blast took place in the tank of the ship. Naval fire tenders were called in to curtail the subsequent fire.

Around 20 people were working on the ship when the blast took place on the drilling vessel, with most of the workers consisting of daily labourers and contract workers. Since Tuesday was a holiday for the shipyard in Kochi, no regular workers of the shipyard were present.

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Police sources suggest that the deaths took place due to the smoke.

"Preliminary inquiry suggests that the deaths happened due to intense smoke," police sources said.

Union Minister of Shipping and Water Resources Nitin Gadkari has directed the MD of the Cochin Shipyard to provide all medical support to victims and initiate inquiry into the incident.

"I have spoken to MD, Cochin Shipyard and asked him to provide all necessary medical support to (the) victims and to initiate immediate inquiry with the help of concerned agencies," Gadkari said to IANS.

The Kochi shipyard is India's oldest and largest shipbuilding and maintenance facility, having started operations in 1978.