China engulfed industrial inferno kills 38, injures dozens

BEIJING-(MaraviPost)—At least 38 people have died and several others injured after massive fire broke at a company dealing in chemicals and other industrial goods in central China’s Henan province.

The fire started on Monday evening before the firefighters responded to the scene of the accident.

The firefighters managed to bring the blaze under control after three-and-a-half hours.

AP reported that the company was a wholesaler dealing in a wide range of industrial goods including what was described as specialised chemicals.

The cause of the fire is still unknown and the number of victims that perished in the inferno is likely to be more than the figures shared with the public.

Authorities disclosed that criminal suspects in connection to the blaze have been taken into custody for questioning.

Industrial accidents are common in China due to weak safety standards and corruption among officials tasked with enforcing them.

In June, one person was killed and another injured in an explosion at a chemical plant in Shanghai. Last year, a gas explosion killed 25 people and reduced several buildings to rubble in the central city of Shiyan.

In March 2019, an explosion at a chemical factory in Yancheng, located 260km from Shanghai, killed 78 people and devastated homes in a several-kilometre radius.

In 2015, a massive explosion at a chemical warehouse in the northern port city of Tianjin killed 173 people, most of them firefighters and police officers.

The chemicals were found to be falsely registered and stored, with local officials found complicit in turning a blind eye to the potential threat.

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