Explosion at illegal fireworks plant destroys two blocks

TULTEPEC, Mexico (AP) — A gas explosion set off a pile of gunpowder used to make illegal fireworks Tuesday, obliterating a two-block area of this central Mexican town, killing at least 10 people and wounding dozens.
Rescuers said they expected to find more bodies as they picked through the collapsed houses in Tultepec, a town 20 miles north of Mexico City known for its homemade fireworks.
Dozens of soldiers filed through the area, assault rifles drawn. Neighbors, firefighters and paramedics picked through collapsed houses, looking for survivors and bodies.
Mexico state Gov. Cesar Camacho Quiroz said at least 10 people died — including a 10-year-old boy — and 27 were hurt. But a paramedic at the scene, who spoke on customary condition of anonymity, said he had counted 14 bodies, and that at least 45 people were injured.
In June 1997, an explosion in a Tultepec home producing illegal fireworks killed three people. And in December 1988, a Mexico City marketplace where illegal fireworks were sold exploded and set off a string of fires, killing 62 people and injuring 83.