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Factory Blast, Fire Kill 10

June 21, 2005

A chemical plant explosion in Sichuan Province and a factory fire in Shanghai Municipality yesterday have left ten dead, 21 injured and two missing. The same day, an investigation into a hotel fire in Guangdong Province earlier this month found the cause to have been an electrical fault.

Seven people were confirmed dead with eight others injured and two still unaccounted for after a detonator explosion at a chemical plant in Hongya County of Meishan City in Sichuan yesterday morning, local police said today.

Three of the eight wounded were seriously injured and remain hospitalized in the provincial capital of Chengdu. The blast leveled a row of bungalows and police are clearing up the site and searching for the two missing persons.

Preliminary investigations suggest the cause was an operational error while workers were fixing detonators, according to police sources. There were about 13,000 detonators when the accident took place.

The plant, Hongya Qingyijiang Chemical Co. Ltd., was built in 1996 to produce mirabilite, or Glauber's salt, in Hongchuan Township.

In Shanghai, three workers were killed and 13 others injured in a fire at a garment factory in Songjiang District, local police said.

The blaze started at around 4:00 AM yesterday in a dormitory of Linjianniao Garment Company, killing one at the scene and injuring 15 others, and was extinguished by 4:43 AM. Two of those wounded later died and the rest hospitalized.

 


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