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Fires kill 3 during China's Lantern Festival


09:26, February 08, 2012

BEIJING, Feb. 7 (Xinhua) -- Three people were killed and another three injured in fire accidents during China's Lantern Festival, which fell on February 6, according to the Ministry of Public Security.

The ministry said in a statement Tuesday that the country registered 668 fires that led to direct losses worth 3.04 million yuan (481,775 U.S. dollars).

To prevent fireworks accidents, on Monday police across the country beefed up security checks in an attempt to eliminate potential risks.

The Lantern Festival, which traditionally brings an end to the Chinese Spring Festival season, is highly prone to accidents as celebrations on this day include fireworks and lantern displays. Lantern Festival is held on the 15th day of the first month on the Chinese lunar calendar.

The country's fire police dispatched more than 20,000 firefighters and 4,500 fire engines, saving properties worth more than 63 million yuan during the holiday, according to the ministry.


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