At least six people have died and six others have been injured – three of them seriously – following an explosion at a fireworks manufacturer in Zaragoza, on Monday afternoon, sources from the Civil Guard and Zaragoza government delegation have confirmed.
Two of the victims have been confirmed as being female. The state of the bodies has not yet allowed for the identification of the remainder.
Around 20 people were working at the site at the time of the incident, the causes of which are not yet known.
Founded in 1860, Pirotécnica Zaragozana is one of the most important companies in the sector
Firefighters, police and paramedics were deployed at the scene and the injured were taken to several of the city’s hospitals, including Miguel Servet University Hospital, according to EFE news agency.
The explosion occurred at Pirotécnica Zaragozana, which is located in Garrapinillos, a neighborhood on the outskirts of Zaragoza, at around 2.15pm and was heard in the city center, said sources at the local firefighting department.
At 5pm emergency services were still trying to put out the fire caused by the blast, which tore down part of the building. A vast plume of smoke emanating from the accident site could still be seen for several kilometers around at that time.
Founded in 1860, Pirotécnica Zaragozana is one of the most important companies in the sector. Its over-12-hectare site in Garrapinillos manufactures fireworks that are sold in countries such as the United Kingdom, Germany, Denmark, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Canada, according to its website.
The company had suffered two similar accidents in 1973 and 1984. In the first incident, a total of five people were killed.