BEIJING, August 18. /TASS/. Around 3,000 tons of hazardous chemicals were stored in the warehouse in northern China’s port city Tianjin rocked by a series of explosions last week, the Sina news portal has reported.
"The chemicals included 700 tons of sodium cyanide, 800 tons of ammonium nitrate and 500 tons of potassium nitrate," the news portal reported citing Niu Yueguang, deputy director of the fire department of the Ministry of Public Security.
He Shushan, deputy mayor of Tianjin in charge of the municipality's work safety, said the Chinese authorities were expected to collect the rest of the chemicals by Monday night.
A series of explosions hit a warehouse storing chemicals, owned by Ruihai Logistics, at around midnight on August 12. Eyewitnesses claimed that the blast shattered windows in buildings within a two-kilometer perimeter, while more than 1,000 cars burned down.
Shortly after the explosion, which was equal to 3 tons of TNT, a massive fire broke out. Several other blasts occurred later, with the strongest of them equal to about 21 tons of TNT.
The death toll in the series of explosions has already reached 114 people and 70 others have gone missing, according to the latest reports. Almost 700 other people remain in hospitals.
On Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin sent a telegram to Chinese President Xi Jinping, expressing condolences over the tragedy in Tianjin. Russian Emergencies Minister Vladimir Puchkov offered assistance to China’s social security minister in dealing with the aftermath of the explosions.