Death toll from blasts at China factory rises to 18

27 August 2008 12:30  [Source: ICIS news]

SHANGHAI (ICIS news)--Tuesday’s explosions at a chemical plant in south China’s Guangxi province have killed 18 people, injured 60, with 20 still missing, according to the official Xinhua news agency on Wednesday.


The facility owned by Guangxi Guangwei Chemical Industry Co, which produced polyvinyl alcohol, calcium carbide and vinyl acetate monomer (VAM), remained shutdown due to damage caused to its buildings, sources said.   


Environmental experts were monitoring the air quality and the nearby Longjiang river but had found no evidence of chemical pollution after the accident, a local government official told the media.


Investigators are still looking for the cause of the incident, which began with an explosion in a workshop at 06:00 local time (22:00 GMT) and set off a chain of blasts in containers of flammable substances such as methanol, VAM and liquid chlorine.


The company is a subsidiary of Guangxi Vinylon Group.


Neither company was available for comment.

By: Judith Wang
+65 6780 4359

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