- Government without confirming the death toll
- About 100 people were injured
- Condolences to the Mayor
The crash happened in Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone. News agencies reported that the accident took place in the eastern part of the city and that fuel was leaking from the tanker that collided with the lorry. But locals who saw the fuel leaking from the tanker rushed to collect the fuel, the report said. This was followed by an explosion. This has led to a sharp rise in the death toll, according to reports.
Central Morg authorities and the local government say 100 people have been killed in the crash. But the government has not yet confirmed the number of deaths. About 100 people have been admitted to various hospitals in the city with serious injuries, Health Minister Amara Jambai said.
Mayor Joan Aki Sawyer said in a Facebook post that the death toll had risen as people rushed to collect petrol from the crashed vehicle. But the mayor, who later edited the post, reportedly removed the reference.
The bodies of many of those killed in the crash were found inside cars, the BBC reported, citing eyewitnesses. A bus was also destroyed in the accident. The fire from the tanker spread to nearby vehicles and buildings. Traffic was light at this time of night as bike taxi drivers arrived to collect fuel. Many of the dead were trapped like this.
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The head of the National Disaster Management Agency said the tragedy had taken place and several people had been killed. He shared footage from the scene and said the bodies were found burnt at the scene. Many shops and houses in the area were gutted in the blaze.
The mayor said he did not yet understand the extent of the accident and that police and municipal officials were on the scene to coordinate rescue efforts. She added that she shares the grief of the families of those killed in the accident. She said the government would do everything possible to help those in danger.
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At the same time, international media reports indicate that tanker lorries have been involved in a number of fatal accidents in the African region in the past. The death toll has risen in the past as people came to collect fuel from the wrecked vehicle. In a similar accident in Tanzania in 2019, 85 people were killed. In 2018, 50 people were killed in an accident in the Congo.
Coming to the south is the Heritage Museum