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Chemical factory explodes in China, killing one person


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A chemical factory exploded in eastern China, killing one person, nearly three weeks after massive chemical warehouse explosions in the country exposed lax enforcement of safety regulations.

The Dongying News website - run by the Dongying city government - said the factory in Lijin county in Shandong province exploded on Monday night and the fire was brought under control after about five hours.

Dongying News said six executives of the company that runs the factory, Shandong Binyuan Chemical Company, have been detained and that the explosion is under investigation.

The company, located in the Lijin Binhai Economic and Technological Development Zone, says on its website that it has the capacity to produce 20,000 tons of adhesive materials annually.

No one was available to comment at the company.

The area is 190 miles from Tianjin, where blasts on August 12 at warehouses storing hazardous chemicals killed at least 158 people, most of whom were firefighters.

The warehouses were closer to homes than is allowed under safety regulations, and they were storing too much hazardous material - including 700 tons of sodium cyanide.

Authorities are investigating wrongdoing in permit approvals and regulation of the warehouse company, Ruihai International Logistics, and have detained 12 company employees and executives and 11 government officials.

PA Media