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    “Fatal Fire at South Korean Battery Plant Claims Lives of 22, Including 18 Chinese Citizens”


    Tragic Fire at South Korean Battery Factory Claims 22 Lives, Including 18 Chinese Nationals

    A devastating fire engulfed a lithium battery factory in South Korea, claiming the lives of 22 individuals, including 18 Chinese nationals. The incident, which occurred in Hwaseong city, south of Seoul, marks one of the country’s worst factory disasters in recent years.

    Over 100 people were inside the factory when a series of explosions rocked the second floor, where lithium-ion batteries were being inspected and packaged. Firefighter Kim Jin-young described the chaotic scene to media, stating that most of the victims suffered severe burns, making identification a challenging process.

    Firefighters battled the massive blaze, working to prevent its spread to neighboring factories. Due to the highly combustible nature of lithium batteries, traditional firefighting methods were ineffective, requiring the use of dry sand to contain the fire.

    The factory, owned by Aricell, a prominent South Korean battery manufacturer, stored an estimated 35,000 battery cells on the second floor alone. Lithium batteries are known for their rapid and intense combustion, posing significant challenges for emergency responders.

    President Yoon Suk Yeol issued emergency directives, urging authorities to mobilize all resources for search and rescue operations. Concerns about additional explosions and the safety of firefighters added complexity to the rescue efforts.

    The tragic incident has sent shockwaves through South Korea’s battery industry, with shares of S-connect, Aricell’s parent company, plummeting by over 20 percent on the Seoul exchange. The nation, a key producer of batteries for various applications, including electric vehicles, faces scrutiny over safety regulations and disaster preparedness in industrial settings.

    This catastrophe serves as a stark reminder of the risks associated with manufacturing processes involving hazardous materials. Investigations into the cause of the fire and measures to prevent such tragedies in the future are underway, as the nation mourns the lives lost in this heartbreaking event.

    Sources By Agencies

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