36 killed in Mexico fireworks blast; 72 injured

Mexico fireworks blast

Mexico City, Dec 21: At least 36 people were killed when several explosions ripped through a fireworks market in Mexico, authorities said.

Three minors will be transferred to a hospital in Texas for treatment for their extreme burns, officials said. An additional 72 people were injured.

Public prosecutor Alejandro Gomez said 31 people died at the scene of the tragic incident that took place on Tuesday in Tultepec and five others later died in hospitals, Efe news reported.  Of the victims, only two – a man and a 10-year-old girl – have been identified.

Government official Jose Manzur told the local media that “in many cases, bodies are burned”, which makes it difficult to identify them.

The number of injured was put at 72 — 37 men, 25 women and 10 minors. They were transferred to hospitals near the fireworks market in San Pablito where there were six explosions just minutes before 3 p.m.

Firefighters and rescue teams from the state and capital converged at the site following the blast.

Images posted on social networks and news websites showed a thick column of grey smoke billowing high into the sky above the market.

In a video footage of the incident, apparently posted by a motorist driving by the scene, scores of firecrackers could be seen going off at once in different directions, as well as small explosions.

The injured were taken to different hospitals.

 Wefornews Bureau

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