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Clean-up operations conitnue at China blast site

17 August 2015 13:59


Rescue workers in China continue to clean up hundreds of tons of cyanide at the site of recent massive blasts at a chemicals plant in the northern city of Tianjin amid public criticism over the official response to the accident.

As the clean-up efforts continued on Monday, it was revealed that the company operating the storage facility had been storing hundreds of tons of cyanide, reportedly almost 30 times the legal amount.

Local residents expressed skepticism about the official claim that the air and water in the city remain safe.

“Around 700 tons” of sodium cyanide was being stored at the site of the huge blasts, said Tianjin’s Vice Mayor He Shusheng at a Monday press conference.

This is while the Beijing News daily reported that the warehouse was only authorized to hold 24 tons of the substance, citing the storage plans that it had obtained.

The vice mayor also reiterated that a major, “very complicated and difficult” clean-up was underway on Monday. He also said that the effort faced difficulties with the presence of 16,500 empty shipping containers and amid concerns that expected rain could release hydrogen cyanide gas.

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