A majority of those killed are understood to be firefighters first on the scene and engulfed by a much larger second explosion. Many were aged just 17 and earned less than 3000 renminbi ($640) a month.
'Deputy head Dong Shexuan is the son of a former police chief of Tianjin port.
"My connections is in police and fire. When we needed a fire inspection, I went to meet officials at the Tianjin port fire squad. I gave them the files and soon they gave me the appraisal," Dong said, according to Xinhua.
The warehouse was storing hundreds of tonnes of sodium cyanide, far more than legally allowed, it has emerged.