Latest China factory fire explosion kills 38


On Nov. 22, a fire at a factory in Anyang, Henan Province killed 38 and injured two people. This is the latest fatal industrial accident to hit China. 

A fire broke out in a plant belonging to a private firm in what is considered Anyang’s ‘high-tech zone.’ Most of the people killed were women who made winter cotton clothes in the factory. It took a team of 200 rescue workers and 60 firefighters a total of four hours to extinguish the fire.

Initially, police authorities reported that “criminal suspects” in connection with igniting the fire have been taken into custody. Yet, after checking the factory’s CCTV, local officials claimed the fire broke out due to poor management of electrical welding protocols. 

“All this just raises concerns about public safety, especially in China.” Fabian Roh (12), avid news reader, said. “Also, there’s been a long history of poor management in factories with corruption between government officials. I think that was why there was the speculation that this incident was related to illegal wrongdoings.”  

The fire reminded the public about other industrial accidents in recent years. In 2015, 150 people died after a series of explosions at a chemical warehouse in the northern port city of Tianjin. In 2019, another explosion at a chemical factory in Yancheng killed 78 people and destroyed homes within a radius of nine kilometers.

“This is a consistent series of events that happens in China,” Claire Lee (12), student from Beijing, said. “I know for a fact that the 2015 accident was a big shock to almost all of China, so I assumed that the government has created stricter protocols to better manage factory situations. But I guess this situation says otherwise.”