Tianjin launches checks on companies handling dangerous materials

The Binhai New Area in Tianjin has launched safety inspections on companies that handle dangerous chemicals or goods following warehouse blasts that caused grave casualties in mid-August.

The safety checks, which started Sunday and will continue until the end of this year, target enterprises that produce, store or use dangerous chemicals, as well as companies that transport dangerous goods, a spokesman with the area's government told Xinhua on Monday.

Binhai New Area has set up a leadership office of nearly 100 officials from the public security bureau, planning and land resources, work safety, and Tianjin Port to carry out the operation.

Companies determined to be "lacking conditions for safe production" will be shut down and those found to be hazardous will be suspended from operation for improvement.

Earlier this month, Tianjin authorities pledged to improve the management of sites where hazardous chemicals are stored with a 24-hour online monitoring system.

Two blasts ripped through a warehouse at around 11:30 p.m. on Aug. 12 in Tianjin Port, where large amounts of toxic chemicals were stored, including around 700 tonnes of sodium cyanide. The blasts killed over 160 people.

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