Powerful blast in China leaves seven dead and scores injured

The explosion in the town of Xinmin in Shaanxi province destroyed or damaged dozens of nearby buildings, including a hospital.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

The cause of the blast is as yet unknown. Media reports said it may have been caused by explosives illegally stored in the building.

A powerful explosion ripped through a building in northwestern China on Monday, killing at least seven people and injuring 94 others.

The blast in the town of Xinmin, in Shaanxi province, destroyed or damaged dozens of nearby buildings including a hospital, state news agency Xinhua said.

The cause of the blast is as yet unknown, but media reports said that it may have been caused by explosives illegally stored in the building.

China has a bad safety record, with previous blasts blamed on poorly stored chemicals or industrial explosives. These materials are easy to get hold of due to their use in China's booming coal mining sector.

At least 165 people were killed last year in a series of powerful explosions at a chemicals warehouse in the northern city of Tianjin.

There have also been cases of people deliberately setting off blasts to settle local grievances such as land disputes.


Some online news sites quoted residents as saying the blast could have been caused by illegally stored explosives. (Reuters)

After the explosion, dozens of firefighters were sent to the scene as rescuers searched for survivors trapped in the rubble, Xinhua said.

Pictures showed widespread damage, with windows blown out of buildings, dense grey smoke engulfing the streets and bloodied people, some lying on the ground.

Source: 
TRTWorld and agencies