An explosion at a Chinese factory dormitory killed seven workers and injured one, the state news agency reported today.
The blast, blamed on illegal explosives, ripped through the four-storey building in the grounds of a factory producing slab stone in the village of Niugang, near the northern city of Baoding, the official Xinhua News Agency said.
The bodies of six workers were found buried in the collapsed building, while another died after being taken to hospital.
Illegal explosives are commonly produced in the surrounding province of Hebei and sold mainly to farmers seeking to earn extra income by quarrying stone.
Authorities cracked down on the practice after a man seeking revenge against his ex-wife and others used illegal explosives to destroy a series of buildings in Hebei's capital Shijiazhuang in 2001, killing 108 people.