In northwestern China, at least 31 people were killed and seven others injured when a massive cooking gas explosion ripped through a barbecue restaurant. The incident occurred at approximately 8:40 pm on Wednesday in Yinchuan’s bustling Xingqing District.
According to official reports from the state-run Xinhua news agency, the explosion was caused by leakage of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) within the restaurant’s operational area.
The powerful blast resulted in a total of 38 casualties, with 31 individuals tragically losing their lives. Among the injured, seven individuals, including one in critical condition, are currently receiving medical treatment, as stated by the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Regional Committee of the ruling Communist Party of China (CPC).
The explosion unfolded on the eve of China’s Dragon Boat festival, a two-day holiday period set to commence on Thursday. The restaurant, reportedly bustling with holiday crowds, faced heavy damage from the blast, with surrounding buildings also affected.
Chinese President Xi Jinping swiftly responded to the disaster, calling for a comprehensive rescue and treatment effort for the injured. He further emphasized the need for a thorough safety inspection in Yinchuan’s barbecue restaurants.
A specialized team, comprising members from China’s Ministry of Emergency Management, Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development, and the State Administration for Market Regulation, was promptly dispatched to the scene to oversee rescue operations. Accompanied by this joint work team were four medical experts assigned to provide emergency medical assistance. The local rescue team, consisting of 102 personnel and 20 vehicles, worked tirelessly at the site. The rescue operations concluded in the early hours of Thursday, as reported by Xinhua.
Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region is home to China’s Hui Muslim community, adding a poignant layer to this tragic event. As the nation grapples with the aftermath of this devastating explosion, efforts to support the victims and conduct thorough investigations into the incident will remain at the forefront of the authorities’ agenda.