Six killed in Chinese pesticide plant explosion

Blanche Robertson
March 23, 2019

City officials had previously said that at least 12 people were killed and 30 injured in the explosion in Jiangsu province.

Eye-witnesses said several workers were trapped after buildings were knocked down by the shockwave stated to be a mild tremor caused by the blast which took place in a pesticide plant.

The China Earthquake Administration reported a 3.0 magnitude earthquake was detected in Jiangsu, suspected to have been caused by the impact of the explosion, according to South China Morning Post.

A video posted on state broadcaster CCTV's website shows huge plumes of smoke spewing from a factory building and spreading over the area.

Production at other plants in the area were not affected, the report said.

According to Xinhua, the official news agency, the explosion occurred at Tianjiayi Chemical, in a fertilizer factory at the chemical industrial park.

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The blast, in the Chinese eastern city of Yancheng, Jiangsu province, happened at 2:48 p.m. local time (0648 GMT) and blew out the windows of nearby houses.

Thirty-one people have been rescued as of 5pm, the Ministry of Emergency Management said.

Injured personnel have been sent to the hospital for medical treatment.

Industrial accidents have been common in China which is put down to slack safety regulations.

Among the worst accidents was a massive 2015 explosion at a chemical warehouse in the port city of Tianjin that killed 173 people, majority firefighters and police officers. The company had undertaken illegal construction that had not passed safety checks, according to local authorities.

In 2015, giant chemical blasts at a container storage facility killed at least 165 people in the northern port city of Tianjin.

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