Tokyo, Japan — An explosion at a chemical plant in western Japan has killed a firefighter and injured dozens of people. Police said the explosion was reported Saturday at chemical plant Nippon Shokubai Co. in the coastal industrial area of Himeji, about 600 kilometres (370 miles) west of Tokyo. Plant workers first reported a large bursting noise and temblor after a chemical tank exploded.
Television footage showed the plant covered with orange flames and black smoke rising to the sky. Five hours after the explosion, firefighters were still fighting the blaze.
The cause of the blast was under investigation.
Public television NHK said 30 people were injured. Police said at least 17 people were injured, including seven other firefighters, two police officers and seven plant workers.