Pou Yuen blaze delays Europe shoe orders

15:29 | 28/08/2013
A major blaze at a Taiwanese shoe and garment company in Ho Chi Minh City - the second in three months at the facility - has delayed shoe shipments to Puma and Classic in Europe, a company source said.

The huge fire broke out early last Wednesday at Pou Yuen Vietnam in Binh Tan district. About 500 firefighters were deployed and worked five hours to put out the fire, which destroyed about 4,000 square metres of the company’s factory and warehouse.

Damage affected the section used to make sports shoes for Puma and Classic, said Cu Phat Nghiep, trade union chairman of Pou Yuen Vietnam. The company was set to make deliveries last weekend and early this week, he said, adding that the damage must be vast as the warehouse of finished products “was almost burned to ashes.”

According to Nghiep, a timetable for the restart of production in the affected area was still unknown as authorities were checking fire safety throughout the premises.

A fire also broke out at the factory last May, burning nearly 900 square metres of a shoe sole production factory.

Police colonel Le Tan Buu, deputy director of the city’s Fire Fighting Police Department, said two fires in three months suggested that “there are some problems” with fire safety at the company.

After the blaze was put out that day, no outsiders or reporters were allowed to enter the fire site. Workers were also locked out. No casualties were reported and an investigation has been launched to determine the cause of the blaze and estimate the cost of the damage.

Nghiep said the burned factory and warehouse employed 12,000 workers. They would still receive their wages for the days off despite the halt in production.

Dinh Van Ngan, head of counsellor office from the city’s Fire Fighting Police Department, told VIR that the fire broke out in either  the fourth and fifth floor and consumed 4,000 square metres of the 42,000 square metre-A4 block.

A total of 50 fire engines anhundreds of firefighters fought to bring the fire under control.

Huynh Van Uyen, deputy head of Binh Tan District Fire Fighting Police Office, said the shoe and garment maker housed large amounts of flammable materials. Therefore, the firm and many other footwear companies in the city would have to pay more attention to fire prevention measures.

Pou Yuen Vietnam is a subsidiary of Taiwan’s Pou Chen Group, a world leading footwear and garment maker. It manufactures shoes for global brands such as Adidas, Nike, Reebok, Puma and New Balance.

By By Tuong Thuy and Nguyen Chung

What the stars mean:

★ Poor ★ ★ Promising ★★★ Good ★★★★ Very good ★★★★★ Exceptional

Based on MasterCMS Ultimate Edition Ver 2.9 2020