Blast in sugar factory kills 11 in Tanzania

Eleven people have been killed and two others injured in an explosion at a sugar factory in Tanzania’s eastern district of Mvomero, authorities say.

The blast happened after a heavy duty steam pipe burst as workers were starting production on Wednesday night, the fire and rescue team said.

As well as Tanzanians, citizens of Brazil, India, China and Kenya are among the dead, officials say.

Alex Mkama, the regional police commander, said that his team was investigating the cause of the incident.

The explosion occurred at about 01:00 local time on Thursday [23:00 GMT Wednesday] at a factory run by Mtibwa Sugar Estates Limited, one of Tanzania’s main sugar manufacturers.

All the deceased were electrical and machine staff who were working in the control room at the time, Mr Mkama added.

Following the blast, Mtibwa Sugar Company has suspended all production activities in the factory, one of the biggest in the country.

The bodies of the deceased workers have been moved to the mortuary of the factory’s hospital.

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