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Fireworks factory explosions and fire in Indonesia kill 47

27 October 2017

Two explosions and a subsequent blaze at a fireworks factory in Tangarang, near Jakarta, have killed at least 47 and injured another 46, according to local media. Police in Tangerang said the bodies were discovered by officers when they entered the factory warehouse and the death toll could rise further as many of the injured have extensive burns.

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Stock image

Most of the dead and injured were young female workers, who were unable to escape as the fire started near the front door of the factory. According to AFP, local residents were able to get some of the workers out by helping demolish a side wall. Local TV reported that some of these workers were on fire as they ran out onto the street.

Witnesses told local media there were two explosions on October 26, one at about 10am and another about three hours later, both of which could be heard miles away. Survivors told authorities the fire started in the factory's drying section where finished fireworks are dried, many under the sun.

A local official told MetroTV that although the factory had a permit, its proximity to a residential area was against regulations. The factory had been operating for less than two months.

Fatal fires are not uncommon in Indonesia due to poor safety standards that are routinely flouted.

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