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Rescuers seek for 5 lacking staff at German blast web site

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BERLIN (AP) — Rescue groups in western Germany looked for 5 lacking staff Wednesday at an industrial park for chemical firms a day after an explosion killed no less than two individuals and injured 31 others.

The Tuesday explosion on the waste administration facility of the Chempark web site despatched a big black cloud of smoke into the air and ignited a fireplace that took firefighters virtually 4 hours to extinguish. The economic park is positioned within the metropolis of Leverkusen, close to Cologne.

The CEO of Currenta, which operates the Chempark industrial park, stated there was little hope for the 5 lacking staff — 4 Currenta workers and one exterior contractor.

“We’ve got to imagine that the lacking individuals can not be discovered alive,” Frank Hyldmar instructed reporters in Leverkusen. He added that of the 31 injured, one individual was nonetheless in a life-threatening situation.

Police stated Wednesday that investigations into the reason for the explosion would start Thursday, the German news company dpa reported. To this point, it appeared that the blast was linked to storage tanks crammed with solvents.

Because of the thick smoke, authorities instructed residents Tuesday to remain indoors and shut down a number of main highways for hours. Metropolis officers additionally warned individuals to not let kids play exterior, use exterior swimming pools or eat fruit and greens from their backyards for the subsequent few days.

The environmental authority for the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, the place Leverkusen is positioned, stated Wednesday that the explosion’s smoke contained dioxin, polychlorinated biphenyl and furan compounds. Nevertheless, it couldn’t but say how robust the focus of those chemical compounds have been, dpa reported.

Leverkusen is residence to Bayer, one among Germany’s greatest chemical firms and one of many greatest employers within the area. Town has about 163,000 residents, lots of whom work for Bayer.

The economic park is positioned near the Rhine River.

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