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Blast at Keelung ammunition depot injures 9

Soldiers were transporting 120-mm mortar shells when explosion occurred, 2 face life-threatening injuries

Explosion injures 9 at ammo depot in Keelung. (CNA photo)

Explosion injures 9 at ammo depot in Keelung. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — An explosion occurred at an ammunition depot at Keelung’s Hsiang Feng military base on Monday afternoon (July 24), injuring nine people, according to the Ministry of National Defense (MND).

The blast occurred at 3:21 p.m. on Monday as officers and soldiers were transporting 120-millimeter mortar shells at the Third Branch of the 6th Army Command ammunition depot, located within Keelung's inner harbor. The reason for the explosion is still unknown, per UDN.

Ambulance personnel worked around unexploded shells, treading carefully as they attended to two severely injured soldiers. A staff sergeant surnamed Hung (洪) had his right leg and left arm injured, and although he had no vital signs upon arrival at Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, he was successfully revived, per CNA.

Another injured soldier, a sergeant surnamed Yin (尹), had his face blackened by the blast, with third-degree burns on his arms and face and an injured left arm. He was first taken to Keelung's Tri-Service General Hospital, before being intubated and transferred to a hospital in Taipei's Neihu District.

The other soldiers transported to local hospitals were treated for abrasions, dizziness, and hearing issues, such as a ringing sensation.