The Sitakunda district administration on Monday revised the death toll from the inferno that engulfed the BM Container Depot from Saturday night down to 41, having earlier confirmed a figure of 50.
Deputy Commissioner of Chattogram Mominur Rahman said the revision takes account of some duplication that had occurred during the initial counting process.
The new number was arrived at following a recount of the bodies kept at Chattogram Medical College and Hospital, Mominur said.
Brig. General Shamim Ahsan, director of CMCH, said: "We have got 41 bodies and the authorities concerned have completed autopsies for 18 of them on Sunday."
The identities of 24 people were confirmed, said Brig. General Shamim Ahsan, with nine of them having been firefighters. So far, 21 bodies have been handed over to the families.
The firefighters were still trying to completely extinguish the fire as we retired Monday night, a full 48 hours after the disaster.
A team of Bangladesh Army continues to work with the local FSCD, trying to devise a plan to bring the fire under control and to prevent any harmful spread of chemicals in the area.
According to Fire Service sources, the container depot was storing large consignments of hydrogen peroxide produced at the Al Rajhi Chemical Factory in Hathazari, another concern of Smart Group. BM Container Depot is a Dutch-Bangladeshi joint venture, where the Bangladeshi stake is maintained by Smart Group.
Dutch businessman Bert Pronk is the chairman of the depot, while Smart Group's Mujibur Rahman acts as managing director.
Hydrogen peroxide is not classified as a flammable or combustible liquid as it will not fuel fire on its own. H2O2 is an oxidizer. which means it adds oxygen or other elements that behave the same way.
Oxidizers can greatly intensify fire and even cause an explosion.
The presence of the H202 certainly explains the diabolical turn the disaster took on Saturday night, even as depot staff, volunteers and fire fighters fought to tame an initial blaze that broke out around 9.30pm.
While this effort was still on, a huge explosion occurred sending men and equipment flying in all directions - that most likely was the killer blow for many of the lives lost in the disaster.
We get a sense of this pattern of events from the tragic Facebook Live of Oliur Rahman, a young man employed at the depot who went live from his Facebook page when the fire first broke out at the depot. He was informing everyone about the fire on Facebook Live.
The broadcast shows firefighters and other depot staff struggling to contain the fire. Around 41 minutes in, there is an apocalyptic explosion and then the screen goes black, indicating whoever was holding the phone had clearly lost control of it. The Live continues for a few more minutes before cutting out.
People calling Oliur's phone from that point on found it switched off and he went missing. His family identified his body at CMCH the next day. The blast amid the fire is suspected to have also been the cause for the greatest loss of firefighters in a single incident in Bangladesh's history.
Over 200 people suffered injuries, with around 130 undergoing treatment at the burn unit of CMCH, said Anisur Rahman, deputy director of Fire Service and Civil Defense.
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