Indonesia fireworks factory explosions kill at least 23, injure dozens -official

JAKARTA, Oct 26 (Reuters) – Two explosions and fire at a fireworks factory in the western outskirts of Indonesia’s capital killed at least 23 people and injured dozens on Thursday, officials and media reports said.

Thick plumes of dark smoke billowed from a warehouse in the Tangerang district of Jakarta, an industrial and manufacturing hub on the island of Java, TV broadcasts showed.

Saduni, a local district head, earlier told Metro TV that 30 people had been killed but media reports said the toll was lower, with one putting it at 23.

Fiza, a doctor in the emergency unit at Tangerang General Hospital, told Metro TV he was treating seven people, some of them with burns to more than 80 percent of their bodies. Three were in critical condition.

Witnesses said there were two explosions, one at around 10 a.m. and then another about three hours later, both of which could be heard miles away, media reports said.

Tangerang police chief Harry Kurniawan said the dead were discovered by his officers when they entered the factory warehouse, the news portal reported.

A video of the scene inside the warehouse, which was widely shared on social media, showed onlookers counting badly charred bodies.

The video and media images of the PT Panca Buana Cahaya Sukses warehouse showed smouldering ash and debris, with the roof missing in some parts.

The factory had been operating for only two months, media said.

(Reporting by Jakarta bureau; Writing by John Chalmers)

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