A canteen building in southwest China collapsed after an explosion suspected to be caused by a gas leak.
The state broadcaster China Central Television reported on Friday that a cafeteria building in Chongqing, southwestern China, collapsed after an explosion suspected of being caused by a gas leak, killing at least 16 people.
The broadcaster said on Saturday that as of midnight on Friday (1600 GMT), 26 people had been taken off the scene and 16 of them had died.
One person was in critical condition, and the other injured were also treated in the hospital after being trapped in concrete after the explosion.
According to CCTV, the Emergency Management Department has sent more than 600 personnel to the scene in Wulong District, Chongqing City.
The picture released by Xinhua News Agency showed that heavy equipment was hoisting concrete slabs from the explosion site.
Other photos showed rescuers and men in military uniforms digging among the rubble and carrying some wounded.
According to Xinhua News Agency’s global service Globalink, the explosion occurred while people were having lunch. The report said that the cause of the explosion is currently under investigation.
Construction and industrial accidents are not uncommon in China and are usually caused by management staff cutting corners, lax safety standards, and aging infrastructure.
On Monday, a landslide occurred at a construction site in Guizhou Province in southwestern China, killing at least 14 people.
In December, at least 18 people were killed After Chongqing was trapped in a mine, a second such accident occurred in the area in just over two months.
In July, in Guangdong Province in southern China, 14 workers died after a tunnel they built was submerged by floods.
The most serious accident in China is A large-scale explosion occurred in a chemical warehouse in the port city of Tianjin in 2015 173 people were killed, most of them firefighters and police.