Indian rescue personnel at the site of an explosion at a chemical factory in Dombivli. File photo
At least 12 people were killed and around 50 injured after a series of explosions at a chemical factory in the western Indian state of Maharashtra on Saturday, hospital officials and police said.
An official at Shirpur's sub-district hospital in Dhule district said that 12 people had died in the explosion. “There are around 37 injured admitted here, and we have transferred another 12 patients,” DN Wagh told Reuters.
The first explosion at the factory took place around 9.30 a.m. (0400 GMT), police officer Sanjay Ahire said. Videos from the incident on local news channels showed thick black smoke billowing out of the factory.
“There was a 200 litre chemical barrel that exploded first, then the fire spread to other parts of the factory and there were more blasts,” Ahire said.
The fire broke out due to a chemical reactor leaking monomethyl nitric acid — used for manufacturing several types of polymers — which caused an explosion on Wednesday night, Police Officer Rahul Dev Sharma said.
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