Blast at Ghana petrol station caused by floods, death toll rises

2015-06-04 13:15

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Accra - An explosion at a petrol station in Ghana's capital Accra killed about 90 people, many of whom had sought shelter there from torrential rain, on Wednesday night, the fire brigade said.

The blast was caused by a fire that erupted at a nearby lorry terminal then spread to the petrol station and other buildings, fire brigade spokesman Prince Billy Anaglate said.

It ripped through the filling station, operated by GOIL , shattering windows and walls and reducing the station to rubble.

"It was an explosive fire and so the people sheltering at the filling station did not have an opportunity to escape," Anaglate said.

Firefighters battled the blaze into the early hours while police and soldiers joined emergency crews helping rescue people trapped in the wreckage, Accra Mayor Oko Vanderpuije said.

Charred corpses and wreckage of about a dozen cars and mini buses littered the forecourt of the station, where security forces kept an anxious crowd behind a police cordon.

A Reuters reporter at the scene saw some charred bodies in cars where they had sought refuge.

Team of rescuers wearing face masks and gloves went in to the filling station with stretchers to remove the remaining bodies, all of which were unrecognisable.

Initial signs suggested the fire started by accident, Anaglate said.

Floods from several hours of heavy downpour submerged buildings and vehicles across Accra on Wednesday.

President John Mahama, who visited the area, said he was heartbroken by the heavy loss of lives and damage.

He blamed the floods partly on people building homes and businesses on waterways, blocking the city's drainage systems. Ghana's meteorological service there could be more rains on Thursday.

Read more on:    ghana  |  west africa  |  floods

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
5 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.