Vietnamese workers die at hydropower dam site in Laos

By Nguyen Hai   January 15, 2018 | 01:32 am PT
The two men had not signed labor contracts, and their families have reportedly received no compensation.

Two Vietnamese were killed when a scaffold collapsed at the construction site of a hydropower project in Laos last week.

Nghe An Province’s Department of Foreign Affairs has confirmed that the two men, Phan Van Thai, 25, and Vo Van Tuan, 34, died in Champasak Province on Thursday. Neither of them were contract workers, it said.

The two workers have traveled from Nghe An to southern Laos to work several months ago.

The two workers traveled from Nghe An to southern Laos to work several months ago.

A Vietnamese official said Tuan had been working in Laos for six months. He is survived by his wife and two little children. Thai was single.

It took the victims' families three days to bring them home after the accident. No support or compensation has been reported.

Despite concerns from international environmental organizations and its Mekong neighbors, Laos has identified hydropower development as the linchpin of its economy. By exporting the vast majority of its output to neighboring countries, it is looking to become the “battery of Southeast Asia”.

Laos exports electricity to China, and has signed a deals to supply an annual total of 9,000 megawatts to Thailand and 5,000 megawatts to Vietnam.

Laos is currently operating 46 hydroelectric power plants and plans to expand that number to 100 by 2020, according to the Lao News Agency.

go to top