Several explosions at a French explosives factory have injured a number of people. The incident occurred in Bergerac, a town in the southwestern part of France, at a factory belonging to Eurenco. Local reports suggest that the blast happened at 2:00 PM CET.
The blast had also started a fire, which lasted for almost two hours before being brought under control. However, the fire did not spread outside the factory’s perimeter. Eight people were injured in the incident, with one among them being quite critical. Fumes from the fire have also reportedly inconvenienced a number of people living in the area.
The mayor of Bergerac, Jonathan Priolead, told Reuters that the reason behind the explosion was yet to be determined. However, authorities have initially confirmed that the blast happened at a section of the factory where nitrocellulose is used. Nitrocellulose is the chief ingredient in modern gunpowder.
Priolead also announced on a TV channel later that the situation has been brought under control and that there are no threats at the moment. A prefecture released by the authorities also echoed the mayor’s sentiments, saying, “at this stage the incident has no impact outside the site”. It also added, “the smoke released by the fire from the site does not present of particular danger to human and animal health and to the environment . There is no longer any risk of spread”.
Eurenco is a company that deals mainly in modular charges, combustible items, propellants, explosives, and other such material. Warheads, ammunition, and other such items are manufactured by the company. Such factories should never be near localities in order to avoid as less damage as possible to the common populace. One is reminded of the Bhopal gas tragedy in India which left many dead and caused massive damage to the environment.