At least, 58 people died in Niamey, the capital of Niger Republic after an overturned tanker truck exploded while people were trying to scoop fuel.
The blast on the RN1 route near the international airport night left the burnt truck’s wreckage, motorbikes and debris scattered over the road as nearby houses were damaged by fire.
A Witnesses said “Just before midnight I went out and I saw the truck overturned. People came from everywhere to take gas, then I saw fire on its side and everything burst into flames,” a college student told AFP.
President Mahamadou Issoufou visited some of the injured in hospital in the capital, according to the presidential Twitter account while Prime Minister Brigi Rafini and the Interior Minister Mohamed Bazoum inspected the site of the explosion, describing a scene of “real drama.”
“Unfortunately one of the motorcyclists did not switch off their engine. There must have been a spark that caused a massive blast,” the minister said.
He said 37 people were injured and in a very serious condition in hospital with burns.