Explosion in southern China village harms 18 people, possibly killing some, state media say

Chinese state media say 18 people were harmed by an explosion in a village in southern China and some may have been killed.

The Xinhua News Agency said the blast struck at 2:30 p.m. Monday (0630 GMT) outside the city of Kaili in the poor southern province of Guizhou. It says officials are not releasing details about the casualties and are investigating the explosion's cause.

Such blasts are sometimes caused by the illegal or unsafe storage of fireworks, demand for which spikes in the run-up to the Lunar New Year that falls this year on January 31.