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China blasts toll rises to 85

China blasts toll rises to 85
Highlights

The toll from the massive warehouse explosions in China-'s Tianjin city have risen to 85, rescue officials said on Saturday.

The toll from the massive warehouse explosions in China's Tianjin city have risen to 85, rescue officials said on Saturday.


A total of 721 others were hospitalised, including 25 critically wounded and 33 in serious condition, the Global Times reported.

The victims included 21 firemen, the officials added.

Two explosions, 30 seconds apart, rocked the Binhai New Area of eastern Tianjin at around late Wednesday. The initial blaze broke out at Tianjin Dongjiang Port Ruihai International Logistics warehouse, which deals with compressed gas, flammable liquid and toxic chemicals -- some of which become highly explosive when mixed with water.

Officials from the anti-chemical warfare corps of the Beijing Garrison Command took samples of the explosives at the blasts site. The samples have been sent for analysis.

According to the ministry of environmental protection, as harmful cyanide compounds were found in drains near the site, workers have sealed off two outlets for rainwater and wastewater so as to prevent the spread of contamination.

The country will launch a nationwide inspection program of businesses working with dangerous chemicals and explosives.

In an emergency notice, the State Council Work Safety Commission said Tianjin's deadly blasts revealed a lack of safety awareness among businesses and implementation of safety regulations.

The city has opened 12 schools and three apartment buildings to accommodate 6,300 homeless residents.
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