Chinese Chemical Plant Explosion Kills at Least 19

BEIJING — At least 19 people have been killed along using a dozen injured after a chemical plant exploded in southwest China, engulfing the plant in flames along with throwing a thick plume of smoke into the sky.

The explosion erupted in an industrial park in Jiangan County, Sichuan Province, at about 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, the China News Service reported. Intense fires gutted a brand new-looking, three-story production building belonging to the Yibin Hengda Science along with Technology Company, along with windows of nearby buildings were shattered, a Sichuan news service said.

“I heard an enormous explosion, enormous, along with felt tremors,” Liu Ping, an official in charge of the industrial park, told a Chinese news website. “We’re currently checking DNA to confirm the list of fatalities.”

China’s grim record of accidents in factories along with mines has increased in recent years, according to government statistics. They showed which 38,000 people died in work-related accidents last year, a fall of 12 percent through 2016.

Katrina Northrop contributed research.