Tanzania fuel tanker blast kills 64

Tanzania fuel tanker blast kills 64

Sixty-four people perished in Tanzania Saturday when a fuel tanker overturned and then exploded as crowds of people rushed to syphon off leaking fuel.


The deadly blast, which took place near the town of Morogoro, west of the economic capital Dar es Salaam, is the latest in a series of similar disasters in Africa. 

"At the moment, there are 64 dead after two of the 72 people who were injured died from their wounds," the governor of Morogoro, Stephen Kebwe, told reporters at the scene in Msamvu, about 200 kilometres west of Dar es Salaam.
Footage from the scene showed the truck engulfed in fierce flames and huge clouds of black smoke, with charred bodies and the burnt-out remains of motorcycle taxis scattered on the ground among scorched trees. 
Regional police chief Wilbrod Mtafungwa described a "huge explosion" and said the dead were mainly drivers of the taxis known as "boda-boda" and locals who flocked to the scene for the fuel.
A video posted on social media showed dozens of people carrying yellow jerricans around the truck.
The tragedy has also triggered an outpouring of grief across the country, with President John Magufuli and ordinary citizens sending messages of condolences.
Magufuli also called for people to stop the dangerous practice of stealing fuel in such a way, something that is common in many poor parts of Africa.
Magufuli said in a statement he was "very shocked" by looting of fuel from damaged vehicles. 
"There are vehicles that carry dangerous fuel oil, as in this case in Morogoro, there are others that carry toxic chemicals or explosives, let's stop this practice, please," he said.

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