Six people died while cleaning a septic tank in Joypurhat’s Akkelpur upazila yesterday.
The victims first lost consciousness inside the septic tank and later died, said Kiran Kumar Roy, officer-in-charge of Akkelpur Police Station.
One of the six men got inside the septic tank of a residential building around 9:00am to clean it up. He lost his consciousness as soon as he entered the tank. Five others entered the tank to rescue the first person but met the same fate, said police quoting witnesses.
A unit of the upazila fire service rushed to the spot on information that six men fell unconscious inside the septic tank, OC Kiran said, adding that the rescuers found them and sent them to Akkelpur Upazila Health Complex.
0On-duty doctors at the health complex declared all six of them dead, he further added.
Dr Radheshyam Agarwala of Akkelpur Upazila Health Complex said the people may have died for inhaling toxic gas.
“Septic tanks carry toxic gases such as methane, carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide that can kill people in minutes,” he said.
Police in the upazila filed an unnatural death case in this connection and handed over the bodies to family members.
Alauddin Ahmed, upazila nirbahi officer of Akkelpur, said each family of the victims would receive Tk 10,000 as compensation.
The dead are Gonesh Chandra Mohanta, 45, Shahin Akanda, 30, Sajal Mia, 29, Mukul Mondal, 25, Pritam Chandra Mohanta, 19, and Sihab Hossain, 18.
Meanwhile, Hameeda Hossain, convener of Shramik Nirapotta Forum, voiced concern over the incident.