[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
LANGUAGES
Chinese
Vietnamese
Indonesian
Burmese
Thai
More
Last Updated: Friday, 2 January, 2004, 13:09 GMT
'Negligence' behind China gas blast
A Chinese safety official has said a gas explosion which killed at least 233 people in the country's southwest last week was due to negligence.

Sun Huashan, deputy director of the State Administration for Work Safety, told state television that a crew drilling in a natural gas field had misjudged the amount of gas in the well which burst.

He also said that after deadly fumes began to flow from the well, the team failed to ignite them, which would have prevented them from spreading.

"This was an accident due to negligence. Those people who were responsible will be dealt with," Mr Sun said.

A total of 64,000 people fled after the natural gas well burst in the town of Gaoqiao near Chongqing, releasing a high concentration of natural gas and sulphurated hydrogen.

Thousands of those displaced began returning to their homes this week.

Survivors described the gas as an acrid black fog that clung to the ground, choking them and burning their eyes and skin.

The gas field was operated by the state-run oil company China National Petroleum Corporation.




SEE ALSO:
China gas blast villagers go home
29 Dec 03  |  Asia-Pacific
Over 230 dead in China gas blast
28 Dec 03  |  Asia-Pacific
Workplace deaths rise in China
23 Oct 03  |  Asia-Pacific
China hit by power shortages
19 Jun 03  |  Asia-Pacific


RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific