Hyderabad: An explosion at a fire cracker production unit in East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh claimed 11 lives ahead of the Diwali festival. The accident, which occurred around 3.15pm on Monday, also injured six people who have been rushed to hospitals in Kakinada and Pithapuram towns.
Police said they were ascertaining the cause of the accident. “We suspect it could be because of a chemical reaction.
We are examining the witnesses in hospital,” Kakinada superintendent of police Ravi Prakash said over the phone. Nine of the 11 people killed were women, Prakash added.
Authorities are digging through the debris to find more survivors. The entire building housing the fire cracker unit, Manikanta Fireworks, collapsed in the accident.
About 24 workers were on the premises when the accident occurred; some escaped with minor injuries. The facility in Vakatippa village has been licensed by the government and operational for 10 years, Prakash said.