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Toxic gas leak from factory sickens Chinese villagers

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • A titanium gas leak sickens 34 villagers in China
  • All are rushed to a hospital; 10 remain there in stable condition
  • The titanium company's operations are suspended pending an investigation
  • China
  • Wuzhou

(CNN) -- A toxic gas leak from a titanium factory in China's Wuzhou City caused 34 villagers in nearby Fuwan to become sick, China's state-run news agency Xinhua reported Thursday, citing local authorities.

The leak, of titanium tetrachloride gas, came from the Guinan Titanium Company, and happened Tuesday night, city government officials said in a statement obtained by Xinhua.

The gas was released while factory workers were cleaning equipment, the statement said.

The affected villagers were rushed to a hospital after the leak. By Thursday, 24 of them had been released, Xinhua reported.

The remaining 10 were transferred to the Wuzhou City Workers' Hospital, where they are in "stable condition," Huang Zhihong, head of the hospital, told the news agency.

Local authorities suspended Guinan's operations in the area until they can complete an investigation.