Memorial held for victims of China chemical plant explosion

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, March 27, 2019
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Aerial photo taken on March 21, 2019 shows the scene of an industrial park after an explosion in the city of Yancheng, east China's Jiangsu province. [Photo/Xinhua]

On Wednesday morning, sirens blared and hundreds of people stood in silent tribute to the victims of the deadly chemical plant explosion in eastern China's Jiangsu province.

Wednesday marked the seventh day from the time of the explosion, a key traditional date for people to pay respects to the deceased in China. The explosion has left 78 people dead and more than 600 injured.

With white flowers held on chests and in hands, over 200 government officials, rescue workers including firefighters and paramilitary officers and families of the deceased observed a one-minute moment of silence to pay respects to the victims at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday at the scene of the explosion.

The mourners then bowed and laid white chrysanthemums in front of a memorial wall.

At a separate location, another 164 firefighters lined up to observe the one-minute moment of silence.

The huge explosion happened last Thursday following a fire that broke out at a plant owned by Jiangsu Tianjiayi Chemical Co., Ltd. in a chemical industrial park in Xiangshui County in Yancheng.

It reduced over 10 nearby companies to ruins and damaged many others in the industrial park.

"We feel deeply guilty and grieved for the heavy casualties caused by the explosion," said Dai Yuan, secretary of the Yancheng Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China, ahead of the memorial.

"So many people were killed, and those responsible must be held accountable," said one villager who joined the memorial.

Currently, the rescue operation is basically over and the clean-up of debris was underway.

Authorities are still investigating the cause of the explosion.

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