A fire at a pharmaceutical plant in Andhra Pradesh killed six workers and injured 12 others after midnight on Thursday. The fire is thought to have been started by a reactor explosion triggered by a gas leak.
The incident took place in Porus Laboratories Private Limited at Akkireddygudem in Eluru. When the fire broke out in Unit 4 of the pharmaceutical plant, 18 people were killed. In two hours, the fire was brought under control.
Deputy police superintendent B Srinivasulu cited a preliminary probe and said it suggested the gas leaked due to suspected malfunction and resulted in the explosion. He added over 20 people were working when the explosion took place at a unit of Porus Laboratories Private Limited, which manufactures pharmaceutical intermediaries and specialty chemicals.
Police, fire tenders, and National Disaster Response Force rushed to the scene around midnight to rescue and evacuate people from the nearby colonies in view of the gas leak. “The fire was extinguished within a couple of hours and the situation was brought back to normalcy,” said Srinivasulu.
He added five workers were charred to death on the spot while another worker succumbed while being rushed to hospital. “Some of the seriously injured workers were shifted to Vijayawada.”
Meanwhile, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Thursday condoled the death of six people and announced Rs 25 lakh compensation for the family members of the victims.