PM orders speedy assistance for smoke-affected residents of Samut Prakan

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BANGKOK, 18 March 2014  Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has voiced her concerns over the blaze at a dump site in Samut Prakan province while urging all related units to help extinguish the fire and provide aid for people in the neighborhood. 

A message was posted on Ms Yingluck’s Facebook page, saying the Cabinet today raised the issue of the raging fire at a large landfill site of Samut Prakan in a bid to follow up the situation and find measures to address the problem. Although the flames were already kept from spreading, the Prime Minister said the days-long incineration of garbage, a large amount of which was industrial waste, had produced toxic fumes affecting the health of nearby residents.

Ms Yingluck stated that the Interior Ministry had been assigned to coordinate relief efforts with other agencies, including the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Public Health, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, the Ministry of Industry and local administrative organizations. Locals in the surrounding areas have been advised to evacuate while face masks and health examinations are being provided.

The premier disclosed that police were investigating the cause of the fire in order to bring anyone responsible to justice. She also pleaded with all sides to join forces in preventing such an incident from being repeated in the future and to formulate measures for efficient garbage management and pollution reduction.