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Rescued Firefighter in Stable Condition: Local Hospital
   2015-08-15 08:02:47    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Wang Mengzhen

The photo taken at Tianjin Teda Hospital shows the injured 19-year-old Tianjin firefighter Zhou Ti, who was found alive after some 30 hours. [Photo: weibo.com]

The death toll from massive warehouse explosions that hit north China's Tianjin City on Wednesday night has risen to 85, including 21 firefighters.

The blasts have also left 721 others hospitalized, including 25 critically wounded and 33 in serious condition.

CRI's Wang Mengzhen has more.

 

A total of 44 people have been rescued so far from the blast site.

One 19-year-old firefighter was pulled out alive on Friday more than 30 hours after the catastrophe.

Zhou Ti lost contact after the blasts occurred. He was found choking near a container wreckage.

Speaking from his hospital bed about when he lost consciousness, Zhou says it was not from the first blast.

"Not the first time, but all of us were knocked face down on the ground. I only remember the first blast was very loud, I was on the ground, hands covering my head, I don't remember what happened after that."

Zhang Dapeng is chief of staff of the Bonded Zone Branch of Tianjin Firefighting Corps.

"I think it's his strong will which helped him to hold on. When talking with him, I could feel his strong inner power, and we also kept pepping him up, urging him to hold on and telling him the ambulance was arriving."

Doctors say Zhou's conditions are generally stable and disinfection is now the key.

Li Baiwei is a doctor at Tianjin Teda Hospital

"His chest suffered the most severe injuries: several fractured ribs, bruised lungs, and air in the chest cavity. Also, he had a two-centimeter crack in his skull, and a six-centimeter open wound on his left calf."

Firefighters have mostly extinguished the flames at the site.

More than 1,000 firefighters and 140 fire engines have been deployed to the site.

The two blasts happened at about 11:30 p.m. Wednesday following a fire in a warehouse which holds hazardous chemicals.

The death toll caused by the blasts is said to be the highest for firefighters from any single rescue mission since the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949.

The high number of casualties has ignited public discussion over whether the servicemen were properly trained to deal with such a situation.

The city's fire department says the firefighters did not know what was on fire, and an explosion occurred soon after more firefighters arrived at the site, leaving them no time to evacuate.

Related:

Chemicals at Blast Warehouse Not Yet Identified

Firefighter Rescued after Tianjin Blasts

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