CHINA / National

28 killed, 10 missing in two blasts
(China Daily)
Updated: 2006-04-03 05:12

Twenty-eight workers were killed and 10 missing in two separate explosions on Saturday, it was reported yesterday.

A blast at an explosives plant in Zhaoyuan of East China's Shandong Province killed 20 and nine were missing, a local government official told Xinhua News Agency yesterday.

Rescuers were searching for the missing workers; and two who were injured are reported to be in a stable condition at hospital.

The accident occurred at a packing workshop of No 761 Explosive Co Ltd in Xiadian Town on Saturday morning, when 31 workers were at the site.

A Shandong provincial government task force, headed by a vice-governor, rushed to the spot for rescue work; and the cause of the accident is under investigation, Xinhua said.

Eight people were killed and one was missing in a firecracker factory explosion in Pianguan County of North China's Shanxi Province, Xinhua said.

The accident occurred at the Wannianhong Firecracker Factory in the afternoon. Rescuers were searching for the missing worker and an investigation into the cause of the accident is under way.

Despite repeated government orders on work safety, on-the-job accidents remain the top threat to Chinese workers' lives.

"The situation of work safety in China remains dire," Premier Wen Jiabao said in his government work report to the annual session of China's National People's Congress (NPC) last month.

Wen mentioned "work safety" 24 times in his report and listed it as one of the five major problems for China's social and economic development.

(China Daily 04/03/2006 page1)