6 Arrested After Deadly Restaurant Gas Blast

Story By: John FengSub-EditorAlex Cope, Agency: Asia Wire Report

Video Credit: AsiaWire

Six people have been arrested after Chinese officials probed a deadly restaurant gas blast which killed nine and injured 10 others.

Authorities in the city of Wuxi said gross negligence and the use of non-compliant appliances led to the dramatic explosion caught on CCTV on 13th October last year.

Picture Credit: AsiaWire

Images of Xinyan Road in Wuxi’s Xishan District captured the moment the shopfront of the business named Qinyuan Xiaolong erupted and the subsequent shockwave shattered windows and doors across the street.

Video Credit: AsiaWire

As more than 200 rescue workers arrived to find victims in the rubble, a total of 19 people were taken to hospital, where nine were later confirmed dead.

Officials did not identify any of the victims, who local media reports as being restaurant staff, patrons and pedestrians.

Picture Credit: AsiaWire

The Wuxi Emergency Management Office announced on 23rd January that six people had been arrested following the conclusion of initial investigations into the tragedy.

Those detained include restaurant owner Jin Yiming, his shop manager Mr Hu and suppliers of the allegedly non-compliant gas equipment used in the kitchen.

Video Credit: AsiaWire

In their statement, investigators recount the series of events leading up to the blast, saying one of the restaurants’s three gas cylinders began leaking after a pipe came loose.

The non-compliant cylinders, which reportedly came with falsified compliance certificates, exploded when a nearby fridge’s relay device started and ignited the gas, officials say.

The explosion caused damage in excess of 18.6 million RMB (2 million GBP), investigators said.

The business and their equipment suppliers have been stripped of their operating licences, while eight others have been remanded on bail.

A trial date has yet to be announced.

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