On Thursday, a fire that broke out at an explosives factory gutting two floors of the building, killed 16 people and 12 others injured in Murugapatti, about 40 km from Tirichirappalli, in Tamil Nadu.
The fire was noticed in one of the manufacturing wings of the factory and it soon spread to other areas. The noise triggered panic among people in the surrounding area and waves of the blast were felt even two km away from the site, forcing officials to stop traffic on Athur road.
A total of 200 workers reported for work at around 6 am to the factory spread across 5 acre. Around 50 people were working inside at the time of the accident.
The ground and first floors have collapsed due to the fire, which broke out at around 7 am.
The fire is under control, but smoke was still emanating, which is being tackled. The cause of the fire is not known yet.
Three fire tenders, around 25 fire service personnel and 10 ambulances 10 ambulances were at the site.
The police said that the fire has almost been doused, but rescue operations faced obstacles due to heavy rain in the area that has been cordoned off.
There were 15 mini-units in the factory which was manufacturing explosives for deepening and widening wells in the rocky belts when the fire broke out. The licenced unit was working for more than 25 years. Seven sub-units were making chemicals. The smoke was stinking and extremely toxic.