Deadly gas explosion in China

An explosion at a natural gas field in China's southwestern municipality of Chongqing has killed at least 190 people and poisoned scores, the official Xinhua news agency said on Thursday.

    Chinese industry has a poor safety record

    Authorities had evacuated residents within five km (three miles) of the disaster site, it said.

    The blast happened on Tuesday morning at the Chuandongbei gas field in Kaixian county of Chongqing municipality. A well had burst, releasing "a high concentration of natural gas and sulfurated hydrogen", the news agency said.

    The field belongs to China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC), parent of oil major PetroChina.

    A hospital worker in Kaixian said: "We are very busy. There are patients everywhere. We haven't counted the casualties."

    Some had been poisoned and others had suffered chemical burns, he said, declining to give other details or his name.

    CNPC officials could not be immediately reached for comment.

    Poor safety record

    China has a notoriously poor work safety record. More than 95,600 people died in work-related accidents in China in the first nine months of the year, including explosions.

    Chongqing and the neighbouring province of Sichuan are among China's major natural gas producing areas.

    In August, PetroChina started construction of a $400 million pipeline to pump natural gas from Chongqing to central China.

    SOURCE: Reuters


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Explore how your country voted on global issues since 1946, as the world gears up for the 74th UN General Assembly.

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    We dialled more than 35,000 random phone numbers to paint an accurate picture of displacement across South Sudan.

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Meet the man on a mission to take down Cambodia's timber tycoons and expose a rampant illegal cross-border trade.