A garment factory collapsed in the Bangladeshi city of Dhaka on Wednesday, killing more than 350 people. “Police in Bangladesh have detained two factory owners for criminal negligence over the deaths of at least 352 workers,” according to The Guardian. On Tuesday, the owners had been warned the building was unsafe.
30 more survivors were found today, “and police say that as many as 900 people remain missing, trapped dead and alive under the twisted steel and concrete,” the paper reports. One of the survivors (found Wednesday) was a young woman, 26 or 27 years of age, who miraculously delivered a healthy baby among the rubble, The Telegraph reports. According to rescuers, “she did not appear to have suffered any serious injuries and was taken out from the debris, reunited with her relatives and taken to her family home.”
This kind of factory disaster is nothing new in Bangladesh, a country where tons of clothing items sold in Europe and North America are made in horrifying conditions. In December 2010, a factory fire in Bangladesh claimed 30 lives. Retailers that were using that factory include Abercrombie & Fitch, GAP Inc. (parent company of Gap, Banana Republic and Old Navy), Target, Carters Inc. (owner of the brands Carters and Osh Kosh B’Gosh), the Phillips-Van Heusen Corporation (who make Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger), the VF Corporation (manufactures of The North Face and Wrangler and Lee jeans) and JC Penney. Another Bangladesh factory caught fire in November 2012.
Retailers that were using the Dhaka factory that collapsed include:
Dress Barn of the U.S.
Canada’s The Children’s Place
the Asian arm of Benetton based in Hong Kong
For more on the reactions of the above retailers (many deny using the factory), visit Yahoo! News.
The Guardian notes, “Although around 700 workers have died in industrial accidents in Bangladesh since 2005, according to the International Labour Organisation, no factory owner has been found guilty of negligence.”