NANJING, China — An explosion outside a kindergarten in the eastern Chinese province of Jiangsu killed at least seven people and injured more than 50 on Thursday, according to Chinese state news reports.
CCTV, China’s state broadcaster, reported that two people had died at the scene and that five had died at the hospital.
It was not immediately clear what had caused the blast. Videos and photographs circulating on Chinese social media showed a chaotic scene outside the Chuangxin kindergarten on the outskirts of Xuzhou, a large city in Jiangsu Province.
One video showed what appeared to be doctors trying to revive a toddler, who was covered in blood. Another showed adults and children lying on the street, apparently unconscious.
In a video posted on Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, a man yells, “Now they are carrying out dead bodies!”
State news reports said the explosion occurred shortly before 5 p.m. Reports by the local news media described it as a possible gas tank explosion.
Calls on Thursday evening to government offices in Xuzhou and to a hospital where victims were being treated went unanswered.
Xuzhou is a gritty industrial city that lies at the intersection of China’s main rail lines leading south from Beijing with an important rail line from the east coast all the way to Central Asia. It is a big center in China for the manufacture of construction equipment and also has extensive military facilities because of its role as a rail hub.
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