Power plant blast rattles central China on eve of first anniversary of Tianjin explosions

By Lobsang Tenchoe

DHARAMSALA, August 12: A blast at a power plant rattled China, killing 21 people and injuring five on the eve of the first anniversary of Tianjin explosions.

The power plant blast in Dangyang city in central China took place around 3:20 pm on Thursday when a high-pressure steam pipe exploded, reports state-run Xinhua.

The accident was reportedly caused by a high-pressure steam pipe explosion at the plant in central China. Owned by the Madian Gangue Power Generation Company, it generates thermal power and sells slag, ash and petroleum products, reports nytimes.com, Aug 11.

A year ago, on Aug 12, 2016, a chemical blast in the port city of Tianjin killed more than 170 people.

After learning the lesson, the hard way, China has vowed to improve safety at such facilities. President Xi Jinping has said authorities would learn the lessons paid for with blood after chemical blasts in the port city of Tianjin which killed more than 170 people, reports Reuters, Aug 12.

China’s State Administration of Work Safety has dispatched a team to the plant to bolster local rescue efforts and to investigate the accident, Reuters reported citing state-owned China News Service.

“There were lessons to be drawn from the incident to prevent similar mishaps from recurring,” the report added Yang Huanning, head of the State Administration of Work Safety as saying.

China is no stranger to deadly accidents, last three decades of China’s rapid economic growth was often soiled with frequent incidents of mining disasters to factory fire. The anger over lax standards has intensified among the public.

According to a report released last month by Beijing-based Greenpeace East Asia, China is set to add an average of one new coal-fired plant a week until 2020 despite attempts by the central government to slow down approval of the plants, reports nytimes.com.

The blast occurred at a time when China is still recovering from the Tianjin explosions as excavators are still working to clear rubble from the site a year after the disaster struck.

It remains to be seen what effect it will have on the £18 billion Hinkley point nuclear power plant that Theresa May, UK’s newly elected Prime Minister chose to delay as she assumed power.

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