Death Toll In China Explosion Now At 50 People

Photo: Tong Yu/CNSPHOTO/ChinaFotoPress via Getty Images.
A woman recieves treatment at Teda Hospital following the explosions of a warehouse on August 13, 2015 in Tianjin, China.
This a developing story. Refinery29 will update our reporting as we learn more. Updated on August 13 at 10:00 a.m.: Here is what Tianjian looked like before the blast that occurred Wednesday night around 11:30 p.m. local time.
This is how the port city looks now — wrecked and charred by a catastrophic series of gas explosions in a warehouse designated for storing hazardous chemicals.
At least 50 people, including 12 firefighters, died as a result of the blast, and more than 700 are injured and 71 remain in "serious condition," according to the BBC. Xinhua News Agency reported that President Xi Jinping instructed authorities "to spare no effort to treat the injured, search for the missing and contain the fire," and that "the cause of the fire must be found out." As yet, the cause remains unknown. The president is in the midst of a tumultuous week, as the world economy looks to China to explain the alarming devaluation in the yuan over the last few days.
Updated on August 12 at 10:00 p.m.:
At least 17 people died and 32 people are in critical condition following two massive explosions in Tianjin, a port city in northeastern China. The cause of the explosions remains unclear, though the AP reported they occurred in a warehouse used to store hazardous materials and owned by a company called Ruhai logistics. Damage is prolific; 1,000 brand new Renault and a luxury apartment complex are among the material casualties, which extended several kilometers from the site of the fire. Images on social media show enormous, bright-orange billows in the sky. "It was like what we were told a nuclear bomb would be like," said truck driver Zhao Zhencheng told the AP. "I've never even thought I'd see such a thing. It was terrifying but also beautiful."

pdated on August 12 at 4:30 p.m.: Police say that at least seven were killed in Wednesday evening's explosions in Tianjin, the AP reports.

This story was originally published on July 29, 2015 at 4:20 p.m.

Two massive explosions have rocked the Chinese port city of Tianjin. The blasts, apparently caused by a shipment of explosives blowing up, occurred around 11:30 p.m. local time on Wednesday. State-owned media outlet China Central Television reports that at least 300 people have been injured. It is not yet known whether anyone was killed in the explosions.
Witnesses have posted photos of the devastation both on Twitter and on Weibo, a Chinese social media site.
Both explosions registered on seismographs. Separated by 30 seconds, the first hit 2.3 on the Richter Scale and the second hit 2.9, equivalent to 21 tons of TNT. The blasts could be felt kilometers away and could be seen from outer space, one Weibo report showed.
Nearby medical centers are reported to be reaching capacity. “The hospital cannot count how many patients we have received — there are too many of them, and many of them have burn injuries,” a doctor reportedly said. According to Weibo reports and the Chinese news outlet Epoch Times, a similar disaster occurred in 2012 when a chemical plant exploded and caused an uncontrollable fire.

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