44-year-old Thai man dies from overworking; found collapsed at office desk

The Nation Thailand said the 44-year-old victim worked as a senior manager in charge of programme schedule.
PHOTO: Reuters

BANGKOK - The family of a Thai news channel employee, who died while working at his desk, will receive compensation from his company.

Local reports said the victim, identified as Sarawut Srisawat, collapsed at his desk at the Thai News Network building in Bangkok on Monday (Feb 6).

Citing an internal TNN memo, The Nation Thailand said the 44-year-old victim worked as a senior manager in charge of programme schedule.

TNN is a subsidiary of telecoms giant True Corporation.

Thai PBS World reported that Sarawut regularly worked overtime seven days a week. At times, there was no one to stand in for him. He was also called back in to finish his work after being on sick leave for only two days.

The report added that Sarawut reportedly had underlying conditions, including diabetes and high blood pressure. It was later confirmed that he died of a heart attack.

Following his death, Thai labour minister Suchart Chomklin has ordered a probe over suspicions of Sarawut’s fatal heart attack.

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The Labour Protection Department is investigating if Sarawut’s employer gave him at least one day off work every week, as stipulated by law. The department is also checking whether TNN forced Sarawut to work overtime against his will.

According to Thai law, employees’ working hours should not exceed 48 hours a week. If they have to work overtime, the number of extra hours should be capped at 36 hours a week.

Mr Suchart has also ordered the Labour Protection and Welfare Department. and the Social Security Office to ensure Sarawut’s family will receive all due benefits.

If the office concludes his death was caused by work, his family will be eligible for a 50,000 baht (S$1,977) funeral subsidy, monthly compensation of 70 per cent of his salary for 10 years, and pension payments from the Social Security Office.

This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.