Explosion at HDPE plant in Yeosu, South Korea, kills seven, injures 13; resulting fire contained quickly

March 15, 2013 () – Text of report published by South Korean newspaper Choson Ilbo website on 15 March

A massive explosion at a chemical plant in Yeosu, South Jeolla Province, Thursday [14 March] left seven workers dead and 13 injured.

The explosion took place at a high-density polyethylene plant in the city's industrial complex owned by Daelim Industrial at about 9 p.m.

Firefighters examine the scene after a massive explosion ripped through a chemical plant in the Yeosu National Industrial Complex in South Jeolla Province on Thursday.

There was a similar explosion that killed one person at the complex in 2003, and the cause of Thursday's incident is thought to be inadequate safety precautions. Police believe that lingering gas in a storage tank reacted with a flammable substance and exploded.

A fire broke out after the explosion but was contained in 10 minutes.

"Rather than the fire, it was the shock from the massive explosion that caused the high death toll," police said.

Many workers are severely burned, so the number of deaths will likely rise.

Source: Choson Ilbo website, Seoul, in English 15 Mar 13

BBC Mon AS1 ASDel sn

(c) 2013 BBC Monitoring Service

* All content is copyrighted by Industry Intelligence, or the original respective author or source. You may not recirculate, redistrubte or publish the analysis and presentation included in the service without Industry Intelligence's prior written consent. Please review our terms of use.