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A powerful explosion killed at least 31 people in the Dominican Republic, on Monday, August 14. (CMC Photo)

Dominican Republic: Plastics caused deadly blast

August 20, 2023

CMC – Dominican authorities are pursuing a criminal case against a plastics company based on evidence found during an investigation into a powerful explosion on Monday, August 14 that killed at least 31 people.

In a joint statement late Friday, the Police and the Public Ministry said the blast occurred at a business called Vidal Plast, and not a bakery as initially reported. 

The explosion occurred Monday afternoon in a commercial centre in San Cristobal, a city just west of Santo Domingo.

“The Public Ministry has evidence that compromises the criminal responsibility of those responsible who, with their actions, caused the death of dozens of people and caused millions in losses,”  said prosecutor Fadulia Rosa Rubio.

The ministry said it was investigating several people, but did not identify them.

The company, Vidal Plast, recycles, buys and sells plastic materials, officials said.

Authorities also said they have evidence that there was a fire at the business in March caused by a spark and a chemical substance and that the company did not take any measures “despite knowing the high risk of its operations.”

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