At least 50 dead in oil explosion in Congo
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At least 50 people have died in a fire and explosion in connection with a traffic accident involving a tanker truck in Congo-Kinshasa, reports AFP.
About 50 people died and over 100 sustaining injuries due to the fire on Saturday. This after a collation of an oil tanker with a vehicle. This on an arterial highway in the west of DR Congo, the acting governor of the region said.
“We have about 50 dead and a 100 people have suffered second-degree burns,” said Atou Matabuana, the interim governor of Kongo Central region, according to a source.
The accident occurred on a highway linking the capital Kinshasa to the country’s sole port at Matadi on the Atlantic Ocean.
It took place near the city of Kisantu, about 120 kilometres (100 miles) west of Kinshasa. The UN’s Okapi radio said “the flames spread rapidly engulfing nearby houses.”
Images published in local media show how the burned tanker rolled and laid on the side of a dirt road. Other pictures show smoke rising from the tanker after the accident.
The tanker collided with a passenger bus, according to sources of the local news site Digital Congo.
The country's Deputy Prime Minister José Makila heads a delegation who left the Kinshasa capital to get to the scene, according to local authorities, writing the Congolese news site Actualité.
The roads in the Central African country are infamous for their many accidents after years of war and neglect.
In the summer of 2010, about 230 people were killed when an oil tanker rolled and exploded.