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Bangladesh: 21 people killed in factory fire

Date: 2 Mar 2010

Garib & Garib website

21 workers died and 50 were hurt when a factory owned by Garib & Garib caught fire. The site at Gazipur saw workers trapped by the blaze, which took eleven fire engines several hours to bring under control.

The company makes clothes for companies such as H&M, Terenora and Zemman. Unconfirmed reports have suggested that the factory had substandard fire equipment. However, H&M said it had audited the factory recently and had found no serious fire safety issues.

It said that Garib & Garib had worked well with H&M's code of conduct, and that the accident did not seem to have been caused by poor working conditions or safety measures. On its website, Garib & Garib talk about how they provide for the welfare of employees with first aid, day care and dining facilities. Ironically, the site includes a picture of a fire extinguisher.

H&M said it is now talking with a number of other firms to agree what might be done to support the families of those affected.

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