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Bangladesh Alliance reveals flaws in 30 garment factories


Engineers of 26 US retailers and brands under the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety have so far closed down one factory in Chittagong, a year after the Rana Plaza collapse killed 1,138 people.

The platform has suggested the review panel close down five more garment factories.

The Alliance that started with seven teams on March 12 inspected 508 out of the 626 factories in Dhaka and Chittagong.

“We are at the final stages of our inspection,” said Rabin Mesbah, managing director of the Alliance, signalling that inspections would be complete by July 10.

“Alliance and Accord members have 300 common factories to buy clothes from. We have agreed to avoid repetition.”

The platform published the inspection reports on its website on Thursday, stating the findings of the investigation on 30 garment fac-
tories and suggestions for further remediation.

The inspection reports, mainly on fire, electrical and structural integrity, found a lack of fire alarms and a need for better enclosure and maintenance of electrical wiring.

“The inspections did not reflect any severe flaw like Rana Plaza. We suggested the garment makers take corrective action to strengthen safety standards,” Mesbah said.

An inspection found that several floors of AJ Super Garments Ltd, a concern of Nassa Group in Savar, were overloaded with fabrics.

On the absence of fire doors and sprinkler systems in the factories, Mesbah said several factories have not installed these two systems. “But we are recommending installation of fire doors and sprinkler systems in the factories.”

Sprinkler systems are needed in the factories that are housed on seven floors or above buildings. “The Alliance has at least 10 buildings that are more than seven floors high.”

The inspection also found evidence of cracking and a need for beam-column joint repair in a few places in Dhaka-based Ameen Fabrics Ltd, which did not meet the standards of Bangladesh National Building Code (BNBC).

There is a wide deviation between the approved drawings and actual construction, according to the inspection report. The Alliance has prepared the safety standards following BNBC, Mesbah said.

Delta Accessories, a garment factory at Kashimpur in Gazipur, was overloaded with fabrics on several floors.

“The factory owner shall ensure that at least one individual, the factory load manager, is present at the factory full-time and is trained in calculating operational load characteristics,” the Alliance said.

Source:The Daily Star
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