Several people are missing after a huge explosion at a chemical factory in Germany.
Footage showed flames rising hundreds of feet into the air from BASF, the world’s largest chemicals manufacturer, in Ludwigshafen.
The company said that work on a pipeline was the cause of the blast at around 11.30am local time, the Independent reports.
Company spokeswoman Ursula von Stetten said the explosion occurred late on Monday morning at a river harbour in Ludwigshafen, where BASF is based, that is used to unload flammable liquids and liquid gas.
She couldn’t immediately say precisely how many people were injured, according to Fox News.
A statement said: “Several people were injured. Several people are still missing. The exact cause is under investigation.”
The complex is the headquarters of BASF, which employs 33,000 people at its factory in Ludwigshafen alone.
People who live in the area are asked to remain inside and keep their doors and windows closed as black smoke spread from the blaze.
The company produces a wide range of industrial products, including solvents, glues, petrochemicals, plastics and fertiliser.
Our thoughts are with everyone affected by the blast.