An explosion occurred at 9:30 am. in a scrap metals factory while workers were cleaning a heavy, hard metal called tantalum by bathing it in vats containing acid solutions (nitric acid, hydrochloric acid and sulfuric acid).
The explosion could be felt up to 1.6 km away. One worker was killed and 6 suffered burns ;2 were hospitalized. Workers from a neighbouring company were also slightly burned and several rescuers were treated for smoke inhalation.
Fire-fighters, at least eight ambulances and a medical evacuation helicopter rushed to the scene after the explosion, which caused visible damage to the roof and exterior of the building. About 125 people from the daycare center across the street were evacuated. Air monitoring equipment was set up downwind from the plant to monitor for possible acid vapour or other toxic or flammable gas.
The explosion is most probably due to the formation and accumulation of hydrogen gas during the process.