An explosion at an illegal fireworks warehouse in China left 15 people dead and injured over a dozen, according to local reports. Authorities have launched an investigation into the incident and detained one person in the case.
The blast occurred at about 9 a.m. (9 p.m. EDT) in Ningjin county in Hebei province. The powerful explosion shattered windows of nearby residential apartments and also of a building about a kilometer away, state-run Xinhua News Agency reported. Bloodstains were reportedly seen at the gate of a nearby garment factory. Authorities reportedly did not provide further details.
The blast blew away the roof of the warehouse, according to the Associated Press (AP), which cited images of the explosion posted on 163.com, a local news website.
According to the AP, China is the world's largest manufacturer of fireworks, mostly for use in Lunar New Year celebrations, and illegal fireworks production is an ongoing issue in the country. Last year, 13 people were reportedly killed after an explosion at a fireworks plant in Hunan province.