A lightning strike is being blamed for an explosion Wednesday afternoon at a fireworks factory in Żurrieq, Malta. No one was injured in the blast.
The Mount Carmel Firework Factory’s Facebook page states that the company has strict rules requiring that workers stop work and take shelter when lightning threatens. An explosion in May 1989 at the same factory, also triggered by lightning, killed two people.
“Thanks to all those who made contact with us and expressed solidarity,” the Facebook page states.
Fireworks play an important role in Malta’s celebration of Saint Feast Days each July. Żurrieq’s mayor and other officials were on site after the explosion to “console enthusiasts,” the website Malta Today reports.
With a population of about 475,000, the Mediterranean island nation is the tenth smallest country in the world.
Homes near the plant went without electricity for hours after the explosion.