6 missing, residents warned to shelter after deadly harbor blast

BASF said earlier that several people had been injured and some were missing after an explosion in the north harbor area of the site.German petrochemical company BASF has shut down its steam crackers at its huge Ludwigshafen site in Germany after an explosion at the port, a company source said Monday.Six people were unaccounted for after a fire in a supply line led to a series of explosions at the plant’s Landhafen Nord port.The fire was still burning on Monday evening but was under control, a spokesman for the local fire department said. City officials said the blaze could lead to odours and heavy haze and urged residents to stay indoors.Emergency services are at the scene.Company spokeswoman Ursula von Stetten confirmed the base is used to unload flammable liquids and liquid gas.Ludwigshafen is located around 80 kilometres (50 miles) southwest of Frankfurt.Explosions have been reported at two chemical plants in Germany owned by BASF. “Like any big chemical company they know these things can happen and they’re ready for it”.”The exact cause is under investigation”. More than 2.6 million tons of goods are handled there each year, and an average seven ships a day moor at its docks, according to BASF’s website. This will result in flaring, BASF said in a statement.The global company now employs 122,000 people worldwide, with more than 52,800 in Germany alone.

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