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Six die, several injured in huge explosion at fuel distribution site in Accra

Reuters

At least six people were killed and 35 injured, mostly from burns, after an explosion at a fuel distribution site in Ghana’s capital, fire service spokesman Billy Anaglate said Sunday.

“Unfortunately, there are some fatalities and we are working to have the numbers,” Deputy Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah told a local radio station. “There are quite a number also injured.”

He added that the main blaze was largely under control and that the government planned to release casualty figures Sunday morning.

Several eyewitnesses said they had counted four or five bodies, although some bodies could have already been removed from the scene.

The explosion at around 7:30 p.m. Saturday occurred at a fuel distribution site at city’s Atomic Junction where there is a liquefied petroleum gas storage depot and two service stations run by state-owned GOIL and oil major Total, a witness said.

Frightened residents ran from the explosion, which sent a giant fireball high into the sky, and several fire trucks and ambulances were deployed to the scene.

An explosion at a gasoline station in Accra in 2015 killed around 100 who had sought shelter nearby from flooding in the country’s worst disaster in more than a decade.

Infrastructure in Accra, a city of roughly 7 million people, has failed to keep pace with population growth after years of rapid economic expansion.

A small unit on a tower building at Ghana’s parliament also caught fire in July, although the blaze did not cause major damage.