Industrial disaster clean-up operation

Industrial disaster clean-up operation

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Credit: PATRICK DUMAS/EURELIOS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Industrial disaster clean-up operation. Firefighters moving debris at the site of a chemical factory explosion. This is part of the clean-up operation following the explosion of the AZF fertiliser factory near Toulouse, France, on 21 September 2001. Up to 300 tonnes of ammonium nitrate exploded, destroying the factory and leaving a crater over 20 metres deep and 200 metres across. The explosion was heard 80 kilometres away and surrounding buildings were heavily damaged. 29 people were killed, thousands were injured, and tens of thousands were evacuated.

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