CHONGQING, July 14(Xinhuanet)-- Six people are on trial in southwest China's Chongqing municipality for a gas blowout that killed 243 people and injured more than 4,000 in the city's Kaixian county last December.
Held by the No. 2 Intermediate People's Court of Chongqing, the hearing started at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday and is expected to lastfor three days.
The accident was among the worst industry-related disasters ever in China. The blast, dubbed"12/23," was caused when a gas well blew up and spewed a poisonous mix of natural gas and hydrogen sulfide over mountainous Kaixian county as villagers weresleeping.
The six people who have been arrested for major liability accident crimes in line with the Article 141 of the Criminal Law of China, are Wu Bin, Wang Jiandong, Song Tao, Wu Hua, Xiang Yiming and Xiao Xiansu.
Born in July 1964, Wu Bin, a native of Pengxi county in southwest China's Sichuan province, headed the Eastern Sichuan Drilling Company's drilling team, a company under the provincial Oil Administration of Sichuan.
On duty on December 23, 2003, Wu, knew the gas well would explode with absence of a back-pressure valve, but he failed to report this to his superiors and take necessary measures to correct the danger. He allowed his workers not to do their job properly, which directly caused the fatal gas blast.
Wang Jiandong, born in January 1970 graduated from college in Gansu province, northwest China. He worked as an engineer and managed an on-the-spot working team at the gas well. Knowing the significance of the back-pressure valve for the well safety, he demanded workers remove it. He explained the situation to Song Tao,another suspect, but left a major hidden peril for the well.
Song, as a well regulator, did not act on Wang's suggestion even though he had the responsibility to do so.
Born February 1963, Wu Hua is the former deputy manager and chief engineer of the Eastern Sichuan Drilling Company as well as the director of the company's emergency center. He failed to make a resolute decision and give clear orders as to whether the well should be fired to prevent the accident from being increased.
Xiang Yiming and Xiao Xiansu(female), driller and well recorder respectively, are believed to be liable for neglect and failure to detect the grave error.