An explosion near the town of Kazanluk in central Bulgaria on December 19 caused the death of one person and three more injured, Bulgarian National Radio reported (BNR).
BNR quoted Interior Ministry chief secretary Svetoslav Lazarov saying that the privately-owned plant in Muglizh, 10km east of Kazanluk and 20km north of Stara Zagora, had a licence to make fireworks and hunting munitions. Lazarov said that the plant has been evacuated and the area was secured by police and fire-fighters.
Earlier, Muglizh mayor Gospodin Gospodinov was quoted as saying that the plant was in area with several munitions facilities, but there was no danger of other plants being affected.
Bulgaria has a recent history of deadly explosions at munitions depots and production facilities. The most recent one, at a munitions processing plant in the village of Gorni Lom in October, resulted in the deaths of 15 people. That was the third major explosion at the facility since 2007. In August, 10 people were injured in an explosion at the Terem munitions plant in the town of Kostenets, 60km south-east from Bulgarian capital city Sofia.
In February, one person died from burns caused by an explosion at the Arsenal plant in Muglizh, while a series of blasts at the Arsenal plant in Kazanluk in September 2012 resulted in no casualties. The Arsenal plant in Kazanluk also had a major fire erupt in August 2008, but no casualties were reported that time either.
In June 2012, seven people were injured in explosions at a munitions depot near the village of Lozenets, in Yambol region. In July 2008, blasts rocked Sofia after a fire at a munitions depot in the village of Chelopechene, just outside the city.
(Photo: Andreas Krappweis/sxc.hu)