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    Aug 17, 2015

    Death toll from China blasts rises


    THE death toll from two massive explosions in China's port of Tianjin has risen to 112, and 95 people - most of them firefighters - are missing, state media said yesterday, suggesting the toll will rise significantly.

    More than 720 people remained in hospital four days after Wednesday's disaster, which sent massive fireballs into the sky, crumpled cars and shipping containers, scorched buildings and shattered the windows of nearby apartments. Some 6,300 people have been displaced by the blasts.

    Meanwhile, officials acknowledged the presence of more than 100 tonnes of deadly sodium cyanide in the blast area, but said it posed no risk to people outside the evacuation zone.

    Major General Shi Luze, chief of staff of the People's Liberation Army's Beijing Military Region, said that workers were trying to clear the area of chemicals before any rain could lead to the creation of toxic gas.