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17 perish as inferno razes illegal plant

[ 2011-04-26 10:49]     字号 [] [] []  
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Seventeen migrant workers died when a fire swept through an illegal garment factory and accommodation above in a four-floor building in a southern Beijing suburb on Monday morning, local authorities said.

The fire broke out at around 1 am in the Jiugong township of Daxing district, killing the 17 and injuring 24, said Chang Hongyan, deputy head of the district government.

He added that the initial investigation suggests the fire started on the ground floor, which was being used as an unlicensed garment workshop, and spread to the floors above where workers slept.

"The site of the incident was not a residential building but an illegal and self-built four-story building erected by local farmers," said Chang. "The ground floor was rented out for illegal garment processing, which had not been approved by the local authorities."

The cause of the fire is still under investigation but is likely to be a short circuit in the building's wiring, he said.

All of the victims were working in the factory when the fire broke out and died on the ground floor from smoke inhalation, Chang said.

The 24 who were injured, including the factory's boss, were taken to local hospitals, he added.

He Lixin, deputy head of Beijing You’anmen Hospital, said they received 20 people with burns, of whom 10 were severely burned.

"The doctors have conducted operations on three people who were suffering from severe burns and those patients are now in stable condition," he said.


1. How many people died?

2. What time did the fire start?

3. How many people were taken to Beijing’s You’anmen hospital?


1. 17.

2. 1 am.

3. 20.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

17 perish as inferno razes illegal plant

About the broadcaster:

17 perish as inferno razes illegal plant

Lee Hannon is Chief Editor at China Daily with 15-years experience in print and broadcast journalism. Born in England, Lee has traveled extensively around the world as a journalist including four years as a senior editor in Los Angeles. He now lives in Beijing and is happy to move to China and join the China Daily team.