Fireworks plant blast kills 1, injures 8

Updated: 2007-12-04 16:52

HOHHOT -- An explosion at a fireworks plant in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region killed one person, injured eight and left one missing on Monday afternoon.

The blast occurred at 12:40 p.m. at a workshop of Raoyang Fireworks Co. Ltd. in Jinchang Gouliang Township of Aohan Banner in Chifeng City, the local government confirmed on Tuesday.

Luo Zhonghuan, one of the injured workers, said she heard several bangs before the workshop collapsed. "I threw myself on the floor and crawled out of the debris when it became quiet again."

Luo and six co-workers were being treated at the township hospital, while a more seriously injured worker, Cao Xuequan from the southwestern Guizhou Province, was sent to a Chaoyang City hospital in neighboring Liaoning Province.

The identities of the dead and missing persons were not immediately known.

The cause of the accident is being investigated.

Since October 21, China has reported 86 deaths in 12 serious firecracker related accidents, the State Administration of Work Safety said on Monday. In China, a "serious" firecracker related accident refers to incidents where there were three or more deaths.

Chinese firework factories are now in full production as they prepare to supply festive explosives for the upcoming Spring Festival in February. The increased production has also led to more deaths and accidents.

Last Wednesday, a firework factory blast killed 11 and injured eight in the northern Shanxi Province.

China accounts for about 75 percent of the world's total annual firecracker production.

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