Tuesday, August 18, 2015

• China Tianjin explosion: Haunting pictures show huge crater left by deadly explosion that killed 112 people - BY SAM RKAINA , MEGHA RAJAGOPALAN

16 AUGUST 2015

Four new fires at China blast site, widespread safety hazards found
By Brenda Goh

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Four new fires have broken out at the site where two huge blasts last week killed 116 people, Chinese state media reported Friday soon after officials said safety hazards were found at almost 70 percent of firms handling dangerous chemicals in Beijing.

The explosions in a warehouse storing dangerous chemicals devastated an industrial park in the northeastern port city of Tianjin late on Aug. 12. More than 700 people were injured and thousands were evacuated because of the risk posed by chemicals stored at the site.

The official Xinhua news agency said Friday rescue crews were rushing to the site after four new fires broke out. It said one of the "combustion points" was in a logistics site for automobiles near last week's blasts.

The other three were within the central blast area, it said without giving any explanation of the cause of the fires.

The news agency also said the death toll rose to 116 on Friday from a previously reported 114, and 60 people were still missing.

Dead fish are seen on the banks of Haihe river at Binhai new district in Tianjin, China, August 20, …

State authorities have confirmed that more than 700 tonnes of the deadly chemical sodium cyanide were stored at the Tianjin warehouse that blew up.

Nationwide inspections of facilities handling dangerous chemicals and explosives were ordered by China's State Council after the blasts last week.

More than 100 chemical firms across seven provinces have been told to suspend operations or shut down due to safety violations in the recent days, announcements by regional governments show.

That includes 19 companies in Hubei province, 26 firms in Anqing city in the southeastern province of Anhui, two in the capital, Beijing, and 39 in Zhejiang province.

In Beijing alone, an inspection of 124 sites that stored dangerous chemicals found hazards at 85 firms, Xinhua said late on Thursday, citing Beijing's work safety bureau.

A firefighter walks among damaged vehicles as smoke rises amidst shipping containers at the site of …

The State Council said in a statement on Thursday that advanced equipment and the best expertise must be used to prevent major environmental incidents in the future.

Pictures taken by Reuters on Thursday showed workers scooping thousands of dead fish out of the Haihe river near Tianjin, a day after authorities had declared the city's drinking water was safe.

Tianjin officials said the dead fish were caused by regular seasonal low oxygen levels in the water and were not related to the blasts.

Authorities however have also warned that cyanide levels in waters around Tianjin port, the world's 10th-busiest and the gateway to China's industrial north, had risen to as much as 277 times acceptable levels.

Workers remove dead fish from the Haihe river at Binhai new district in Tianjin, China, August 20, 2 …

The blasts at Tianjin also prompted a nationwide review of China's industrial safety record, which has struggled to keep pace with the breakneck speed of China's economic growth.

China has struggled in recent years with incidents ranging from mining disasters to factory fires, and President Xi Jinping has vowed that authorities should learn the lessons paid for with blood.

Executives of Tianjin Dongjiang Port Ruihai International Logistics, the firm whose warehouse exploded, have said they used connections to obtain safety approvals. The site was found to be too close to nearby homes. {ID:nL3N10U37W]

Inspectors carrying out the safety reviews in Beijing found that security personnel at a branch of Sinopec Corp <0386.HK>, Asia's largest refiner, were unfamiliar with how to handle an oil tank fire, Xinhua said.

"Companies that fail our inspections will be ordered to suspend operations, and their warehouses will be put under 24-hour surveillance," Xinhua quoted Qian Shan, vice-head of the Beijing work safety bureau, as saying.

Despite the infractions found at the Sinopec branch, Xinhua did not say that the facility would be shut.

Beijing has also suspended operations at firms that make or deal in highly toxic chemicals and explosives from Aug. 17 to Sept. 6 in preparation for a military parade and athletics event, Xinhua said.

On Wednesday, three oil and gas firms close to residences were told by authorities in the cities of Hangzhou and Shenzhen to halt operations.

These haunting pictures show the aftermath of the huge explosion in Tianjin, China. Chinese soldiers and rescue workers in gas masks and hazard suits searched for toxic materials in the port city today as Premier Li Keqiang arrived to offer condolences, days after explosions flattened part of a national development zone.

The goal is to clear the chemicals before any rain falls, which could create further toxic gas.

Devastating Blast: An aerial view of a large hole in the ground in the aftermath of a huge explosion that rocked the port city of Tianjin

The death toll rose to 112 from Wednesday's disaster, which sent massive yellow and orange fireballs into the sky, hurled burning debris across a vast industrial area, crumpled cars and shipping containers, burnt out buildings and shattered windows of nearby apartments.

The number of missing rose to 95, most of them fire fighters, state media said, suggesting the toll would rise significantly. More than 720 people remained in hospital.

Officials acknowledged the presence of toxins but said they posed no risk to people outside a two-km evacuation zone surrounding the blast area.

"I can responsibly say that there will be no secondary damage to the people," Shi Luze, the chief of staff of the People's Liberation Army's Beijing Military Region, told reporters, referring to people outside the zone.


Damage Site: A building is burnt out at the blast site after the deadly explosions that injured more than 700 people

Shi confirmed the presence of more than 100 tons of deadly sodium cyanide, stored at two separate sites. He said workers were trying to clear the area of chemicals before possible rain showers, which could create toxic gas.

Fire crews were criticised for using water to douse flames in the initial fire, which may have contributed to the blasts, given the volatile nature of the chemicals involved.

Greenpeace said tests around the blast site showed that water supplies were not severely contaminated with cyanide, but that they did not "disprove the presence of other hazardous chemicals in the water".

"Greenpeace reiterates its call for authorities to implement a comprehensive survey of hazardous chemicals currently present in air and water supplies and make public all information," it said.


Port City: Charred remains of new cars at the warehouse explosion site in Tianjin as the city counts the cost

In an earlier statement, the environmental organisation urged the government to establish a five-km (three-mile) evacuation zone.

China evacuated residents who had taken refuge in a school near the site of the blasts on Saturday after a change in wind direction prompted fears that toxic chemical particles could be blown inland.

It was not clear from media reports how many people were evacuated, but the order came as a fire broke out again that day at the blast site, a warehouse specially designed to store dangerous chemicals, according to Xinhua.

Some 6,300 people have been displaced by the blasts.

Shockwaves were felt by residents in apartment blocks kilometres away in the city of 15 million people.

China's top prosecutor, the Supreme People's Procuratorate, opened an investigation into the warehouse explosions, Xinhua

reported, and "will look into possible illegal acts, such as abuse of power or dereliction of duty and deal with those acts which may constitute crimes".

About 100 people from a residential area near the blast site protested outside a hotel where a government press briefing was held, angry that dangerous chemicals had been stored near their homes.

"I'm very worried that these dangerous chemicals will harm my health," said Zhang Yinbao, who works in the chemical industry and whose apartment building is only 800 metres from the blast site.


Huge Fireball: The explosion on Wednesday was so large it could be seen from miles around - and from space

For a warehouse the size of the one that exploded, that's closer to a residential area than allowed under laws that deal with the storage of dangerous materials, according to state media reports.

"From a legal perspective it's unreasonable that dangerous chemicals would be so close," Zhang said, calling for a thorough investigation and compensation.

Emotional family members of missing fire fighters - 85 of the 95 people missing - also protested, marching to district government offices where they scuffled with police before being dispersed.

Smoke from the explosion at the steel factory in Liaoning. File Photo

Blast at steel factory in northern Liaoning province blamed on 'leaked liquid'
Nectar Gan

An explosion at a steel factory in mainland China's northern Liaoning province took place less than 24 hours after the deadly blast at Tianjin port. Nobody was hurt in the latest explosion, which occurred on Thursday evening.

The blast took place around 9.45pm at a privately-run small steel factory on the western outskirts of Anshan city, China National Radio reported on its Weibo account.

Photos circulating on social media showed bright flames sending thick smoke into the air.

The report said the blast was caused by 'leaked liquid'.

Workers at the factory had put out the fire by the time firefighters arrived, the report said.


Thursday, August 20, 2015
by Mike Adams(NaturalNews) 
The first pictures of the mass fish die-offs and cyanide-infused rainfall have now emerged from Tianjin, China, following the catastrophic blast that has unleashed a wave of speculation about its real cause. Chinese dissidents told Natural News they believe the blast was carried out by the Pentagon using an exotic space-based weapon, and that it was intended to send a message to China to stop devaluing the yuan (i.e. currency wars).

The official explanation from the Chinese government -- which tells the truth about as rarely as the Obama administration -- is that this was merely a chemical explosion caused by some local business knuckleheads storing too much sodium cyanide in a storage facility.

Chinese dissidents told Natural News that this was a secondary explosion, and indeed, there are multiple reports of two explosions taking place at Tianjin ground zero.

From the BBC:
The China Earthquake Networks Centre said the initial explosion, in a city with a population of around 15 million, had a power equivalent to three tonnes of TNT detonating, while the second was the equivalent of 21 tonnes. The second was so big that satellites orbiting Earth picked it up as well. Chinese data site Cnbeta published pictures showing the sudden flare.

In other words, there was an initial explosion which set off a secondary explosion that was 700% larger. The initial explosion, we've been told, was the result of the Pentagon's "Rod of God" space weapon. Notably, the placement of this weapon would mean that the Pentagon had knowledge of vulnerable chemical storage dumps which could be targeted for chain reaction mega-explosions.

The result? An explosion so large it was easily seen from space. Here's a large automobile storage lot where cars were all but melted by the blast:

Sodium cyanide declared "totally safe" by the insane Chinese government
The secondary blast consisted of 700 tons of sodium cyanide detonating in an explosion that many of us still compare to a tactical nuclear strike.

Sodium cyanide, when it gets wet, releases hydrogen cyanide, a deadly substance that can poison skin with direct contact. Inhaling it can lead to severe burns of the lungs, and when it enters the water supply, it devastates lifes.

Here are some of the photos of the dead fish that are now surfacing. Hat tip to HK.on.cc and Shanghaiist.com for the photos:

Tianjin citizens covered in cyanide foam, skin burns reported  
Although the Chinese government insists the area is totally safe -- yeah, and the EPA says it doesn't pollute rivers, either -- photos from Tianjin reveal a mysterious cyanide foam raining down on the citizens.

"Some who made contact with it are reporting a burning sensation on their face and lips, while others are reporting a stinging sensation on their arms. Some have said they experienced an itchy sensation," reports Shanghaiist.com:

Hilariously, the Chinese government insists "...that the pollutants are contained and not at risk of spreading beyond the evacuated area." (BBC)

The Guardian adds:
Niu Yuegang, deputy director at Tianjin’s fire department, confirmed that over 40 different types of chemicals have now been discovered at the blast site, including 700 tonnes of sodium cyanide, 800 tonnes of ammonium nitrate and 500 tonnes of potassium nitrate, according to local reports.

U.S. agricultural manufacturer John Deere was even forced to halt production in Tianjin due to the explosion and toxic chemicals.

Official stories are always a laugh riotChina's official story is that this is all the fault of some uniquely dishonest local business people who stored chemicals without a permit.

Yeah, right, because everywhere else in China, everybody follows the permitting rules for storing chemicals. Hilarious.

China's rapid scapegoating of this individual for the explosion is obviously a desperate ploy to silence all the talk of other theories that better explain what happened.

The official story, notably, in no way explains what ignited the chemicals in the first place. If you believe in the laws of chemistry and physics, you know these chemicals don't just spontaneously ignite without cause. Something had to trigger the first detonation which then triggered the secondary explosion.

China's total cover-up of the cause of the first detonation will only lead to more speculation about the real causes behind this large-scale catastrophe.

Sources for this story include: