The Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh has cut ties with another ready-made garment supplier after it refused to temporarily evacuate the factory building. 

Chittagong based Young International was inspected for fire, electrical and structural safety by the Accord in 2014, with the initial structural inspection finding major cracks to the beams and slabs and serious overloading concerns.

A follow-up inspection in April 2016 and review of the Detailed Engineering Assessment showed "new, immediate, urgent" safety concerns, which required temporary suspension of production and evacuation of the building.

However, the factory refused to evacuate the main building in the compound, which was deemed to have significant structural issues. The factory again refused to cooperate fully or allow access to engineers to verify evacuation of the factory.

The Accord says the refusal of Young International to evacuate prompted the implementation of a notice and warning process, and that the factory owner continued to fail to coooperate despite efforts by Accord staff and signatories.

Signatory companies are therefore required to terminate their business relationship with this supplier and all factories it operates – and the factory is no longer eligible for Accord company production until it meets the conditions for requalification.

The Accord, which has now been signed by over 200 apparel brands, retailers and importers from over 20 countries in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia – including Adidas, C&A, Fast Retailing, M&S, Inditex and H&M – reached its third anniversary last month month.

During this time, it has inspected 1,550 factories for fire, electrical and structural safety, with an additional 75 newly listed factories included in the current, ongoing round of initial inspections.

Around 60% of the safety hazards identified through the initial inspections have now been reported or verified as repaired.

So far this year around 20 Bangladesh ready-made garment suppliers have been disqualified from doing business with Accord members. 

Bangladesh Accord severs five more apparel suppliers