Human history is peppered with disasters both natural and man-made. Some of them could have been averted or stopped and others could not. Thailand is no different.
Three of the worst disasters that Thailand has ever faced in its entire history are as follows:
2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami
Since the earthquake that caused the tsunami was so close to Thailand, it was one of the countries hardest hit along with Malaysia, Indonesia and Myanmar. It is one of the worst collective disasters in human history. With almost five thousand deaths, thousands more injuries and almost four thousand five hundred missing persons, it can be classified as such. Not only did this disaster cause devastation to the country’s infrastructure, but tourism and the economy were affected as well.
It took a long time for European tourists to take the risk to travel to Thailand again and fishing suffered mainly through the loss of fishing equipment and a fear of heading back into the waters. People also did not want to eat the fish that fed where people died fearing that the fish fed on their bodies. This made the local fishing industry suffer even more. As a disaster, this one was probably the worst.
World War II
In World War II, much of the world was facing disasters of war. Thailand also faced some of the greatest challenges. Beginning with the Japanese attacking Thailand in an invasion, there were numerous bombings of Thailand and Bangkok in particular. Thailand was originally very neutral to the war until Japan invaded in the hopes of getting to Malaya and Burma as well because they were being occupied by the British.
When the Japanese began to attack, Thai made peace with them and agreed to form allies with them. The British then decided to retaliate even before Thailand had declared war by bombing Bangkok. These bombing raids did little to help the people’s morale in their leader and eventually led to his downfall in 1944.
The Kader Toy Factory Fire
This fire occurred on the 10th of May 1993 and is considered the worst industrial factory fire in history. The fire is said to have broken out at about 4pm and factory workers were instructed to continue working because it was not an emergency. Twenty minutes later, the rest of the building had caught fire and was collapsing in the process.
The collapse of the building was due to the cheap material used to construct it. Fire exits were not built according to the design and the factory doors were locked. The fire alarm was not sounded until much later and the emergency call was made only after the fire had spread too far to be contained. Building One faced the biggest disaster while the workers in building two and three were able to safely escape before the fire eventually reached them.
Almost two hundred workers were killed and over five hundred more were injured. Some of the workers attempted to jump through the windows of the factory to escape the flames and some of them fell to their deaths. Others died of smoke inhalation, of the flames themselves or the building collapsing on top of them. Since this time, factory safety rules have been extremely stringent.
It is the worst disaster in the world’s history of industrial factory fires ever.