Blast at chemical plant in China – 47 killed, 640 wounded

File Euronews

CHINA (VOP TODAY NEWS) — Forty-seven people were killed and 640 injured in an explosion at an insecticide factory in eastern Jiangsu province in the latest disaster in a series of industrial accidents that have angered public opinion, state media said on Friday.

State television said the blast occurred Thursday in the Yanjiang industrial zone of Chengyang, and the fire was controlled at 3:00 am on Friday morning (1900 GMT).

He added that the survivors of the blast were transferred to 16 hospitals, noting that 640 people are treated for injuries and that 32 of them are serious.

The fire at the factory owned by Tianjin Chemical Company was spread to nearby factories. Media said that children in a nursery in the vicinity of the blast were injured.

The cause of the blast is under investigation. But the company, which produces more than 30 chemical compounds, some of which are flammable, have already been monitored by authorities for violating safety standards and have been fined, according to the China Daily.

Chinese President Xi Jinping, who is on an official visit to Italy, ordered all efforts to evacuate the injured and “to maintain a strong social stability,” state television reported.

The authorities should take measures to prevent these incidents and identify the cause of the explosion as soon as possible, Xi said.

“Recently there has been a series of major accidents and all the relevant sites and departments have taken lessons from that,” Shi was quoted as saying.

Public anger at China’s safety standards has risen against the backdrop of industrial accidents ranging from mine disasters to factory fires, which have marred three decades of rapid economic growth.

In 2015, 165 people were killed in a series of explosions at a chemical store in Tianjin.

Repeated undertakings by the government to tighten safety measures have not prevented the disasters of chemical plants in particular.

In November, a series of explosions in a chemical plant killed 23 people.

This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for VOP from different countries around the world – edited and published by VOP staff in our newsroom.

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