January 20, 2015 / 10:52 AM / 4 years ago

Blast at Indian chemical factory kills 1, injures 4

NEW DELHI, Jan 20 (Reuters) - One person died and four others injured at a chemical factory in the western Indian state of Gujarat after a blast caused by a short circuit, police said on Tuesday.

The blast occurred on Monday at chemical maker Survival Technologies’ factory located in an industrial park in the city of Ankleshwar, Paresh Hasoti, assistant sub inspector of Gujarat Industrial Development Corportation (GIDC) said.

A short circuit in the weighing scale that was being used to measure chemicals caused the accident, Hasoti said, adding that the worker died of burn injuries. He said there had been no major chemical leak.

The company, according to its website, makes speciality chemicals for industries such as pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals, petrochemicals and electronics.

Survival Technologies did not respond to requests for comment.

Indian society is particularly sensitive to industrial blasts after the 1984 Bhopal disaster.

In the early hours of Dec. 3, 1984, around 40 tons of methyl isocyanate gas accidentally leaked from a pesticide factory owned by U.S. multinational Union Carbide Corp. and was carried by the wind into the surrounding slums.

The government recorded 5,295 deaths. Activists estimate 25,000 deaths from illnesses since the leak. (Reporting by Aditi Shah; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel)

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