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Worker remains missing after explosion at Ibaraki Pref. quarry

Smoke billows from a quarry after an explosion, in Sakuragawa, Ibaraki Prefecture, in this photo taken from Twitter. (Photo courtesy of a resident near the quarry)

SAKURAGAWA, Ibaraki -- Authorities here have been unable to reach a worker since a blast at a local quarry on the morning of Aug. 23, local police said.

    According to the Sakuragawa Police Station and a local fire department, residents reported to police the sound of a loud explosion from a quarry in Sakuragawa, Ibaraki Prefecture, at around 8:35 a.m. on Aug. 23. Since the incident, a male worker has been unreachable and glass from windows was left shattered at some 40 nearby residences.

    There are reports that gunpowder loaded on a truck exploded, according to the police station. The quarry is located at the foot of a mountain, in an area dotted by residences and other structures.

    (Japanese original by Keisuke Ota and Kotone Nirasawa, Mito Bureau)

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