Second Mourner Dies From Crematorium Explosion Injuries

A 27-year-old woman who died Thursday was the second person to die from injuries suffered when a brick crematorium exploded in Kompong Cham province’s Stung Strang district last week, a hospital official said Friday.

The crematorium exploded on Tuesday after 28-year-old Long Vet, a mourner at the cremation of his grandmother, placed a 2-liter bottle of gasoline inside the brick chamber where the body lay to aid the fire.

“Srey Phoeun died Thursday morning after surgery,” said Kompong Cham provincial hospital chief Meas Chea. “I am sad we could not save her.”

Ms Phoeun’s 8-year-old niece was killed instantly by the explosion.

According to Mr Chea the victim’s stomach was swollen and bruised from pieces of the crematorium hitting her during the explosion. Doctors decided to perform surgery late Wednesday night because they suspected she had internal bleeding.

Mr Chea also said that Ms Phoeun had a fractured skull from the metal door of the crematorium striking her in the head. Out of all the surviving wounded, Ms Phoeun received the worst injuries, Mr Chea said, adding that six people injured during the explosion are still at Kompong Cham provincial hospital, two of which are in critical condition.

Two others are at the Chamkar Loeu district hospital. They should be able to return home next week, said deputy chief of the district hospital Yin Vibol.

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