Death toll rises to 19 in tank truck blast


HANGZHOU: The death toll from a Saturday tank truck blast in east China’s Zhejiang Province rose to 19, local authorities told a press conference on Sunday morning.
A total of 172 injured people, including 24 seriously injured, were receiving medical treatment in hospitals.
The accident occurred at around 4:40 p.m. Saturday when a tank truck loaded with liquified petroleum gas exploded near the Liangshan Village in Daxi Town under the city of Wenling on a section of the Shenyang-Haikou Expressway.
A second blast happened when the blown-up truck fell onto a workshop near the expressway. The explosions caused the collapse of residential houses and factory workshops.
So far, more than 2,660 rescue personnel, 151 rescue vehicles and over 30 large rescue machinery and equipment were sent to the site for rescue work, said Zhu Minglian, vice mayor of Wenling, at the press conference.
More than 630 medical workers were also mobilized for the treatment of the injured, said Zhu.
Local environmental protection authorities carried out real-time monitoring of the air and water around the accident site. No obvious pollution was found so far, said Zhu. Rescue and search efforts are underway. The cause of the accident is under further investigation. – Agencies