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Around 5,000 new cars burnt down in Wednesday’s major explosions in China’s Tianjin

August 14, 2015, 16:00 UTC+3 BEIJING
According to China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection, cyanide and other hazardous highly toxic chemicals were found at sight of the explosion
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© AP Photo/Ng Han Guan

BEIJING, August 14. /TASS/. The death toll in powerful explosions in China’s northern port city of Tianjin has reached 56 people. According to Xinhua agency, 721 people were hospitalized, 56 remain in a critical condition.

China’s State Council has issued an order today about a full-scale inspection of dangerous chemicals over the country.

The explosions that struck Tianjin earlier this week partially damaged the city’s port. Chinese media reported that around 5,000 new cars burned down on the territory of the port, including Volkswagen, BMW, Toyota and Mazda.

A total of 1,000 firefighters are extinguishing fire in Tianjin. More than 1,500 armed policemen were sent to the scene to provide assistance.

A full-scale search and rescue operation is underway at the sight of the explosion. An official spokesman of China’s emergencies services told a press conference today that rescuers saved 32 people from under debris.

China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection said that cyanide and other hazardous highly toxic chemicals were found at sight of the explosion. According the ministry, a level of cyanide exceeded the norm by eight times in one of drain pipes in the emergency area.

Russian nationals have not been injured in a series of explosions that rocked Tianjin, Russia’s Embassy in China told TASS on Friday.

"According to the Chinese side, there is no information about injured Russian nationals in Tianjin," the embassy said adding that "Russian citizens did not contact the consular department of Russia’s Embassy in China."

A powerful explosion rocked a warehouse storing chemical goods around midnight on Wednesday. Another major explosion followed when firefighters were working at the scene. Eyewitnesses say that buildings within a 2km radius had windows blown out, while more than 1,000 cars burned down.

The causes of the accident have not been identified yet.

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