Freetown, Sierra Leone: Sierra Leone’s National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) has confirmed at least 108 people got killed and 92 others injured in a fuel tank explosion.
According to the statement made by the NDMA on Saturday, a tanker loaded with fuel and a truck carrying granite stones collided on a highway. The collision took place while the fuel tanker was about to enter a nearby filling station to discharge its fuel.
The statement further mentioned that after the collision, both the drivers rushed out of their vehicles and warned the nearby residents to stay cautious and away from the scene. The footages and eyewitnesses present there revealed that a leakage issue took place from the collision.
Before the explosion took place, some community members rushed to the scene at started scooping fuel. A major explosion happened, which resulted in a fire disaster, the statement added.
The cause of the leakage was not immediately known, but it was soon followed by a massive explosion.
The injured suffered varying degrees of burn and were admitted into different hospitals across the city. According to the reports, the victims are provided with sufficient medical supplies.
The hospitals called in as many doctors and nurses as possible at the moment to tend to the wounded overnight.
President Julius Maada Bio was attending the United Nations climate talk when the incident took place. He paid his condolences over the heartbreaking accident on Saturday, and said that the government would do everything to support affected families, he tweeted, “My profound sympathies with the families who have lost loved ones and those who have been maimed as a result”.
Vice President Mohammed Juldeh Jalloah tweeted, “ We are deeply saddened by this national tragedy, and it is indeed a difficult time for our country”. He also paid a visit to two hospitals overnight and assured that the National Disaster Management Agency, along with others would “work tirelessly.”