A gas tanker transporting liquified natural gas exploded on a Chinese highway Saturday afternoon. The truck was traveling between Ningbo and Wenzhou, in Zhejiang province.
The explosion took place near Liangshan Village, close to the city of Wenling. A second explosion also occurred after the damaged truck was propelled onto a factory building near to the highway. Flames and smoke engulfed the area. At least 19 people died and more than 189 were injured after multiple buildings collapsed. The injured are treated at six hospitals. Dozens fire trucks and more than 2,600 rescue workers have been deployed to the site, including from other regions. "More than 630 medical staff have participated in the treatment of the injured patients," officials said. The cause of the blast was not known.
The Chinese government authority responsible for safety production called for a speedy investigation. The company which owns the exploded truck has been penalised 11 times by authorities in the past over health and safety failures. Road safety continues to be a cause of concern in China. The traffic police began to take additional measures and conduct inspections of vehicles carrying dangerous chemicals.