How pregnant woman, 3 children died in Ondo tanker fire — Eyewitness

Fresh facts emerged, Monday, on how a pregnant woman, her three children and others were roasted to death after a tanker exploded at Ore, in Odigbo council area of Ondo state.

A pregnant woman, three children and 18 others said to be scooping fuel from the tanker which crashed and spilled its contents were reportedly involved in the incident.

The driver of the tanker was said to have lost control due to speed and fell into a ditch along Showboy Road, opposite Optima Filling Station in Ore, Sunday evening.

In an interview with locals, one Tijani Diekola, told newsmen: “l got here few minutes after the explosion and met some burnt corpses on the ground but the situation was so tensed and nobody could get near the place.

“It was the next morning that some relatives of the victims were able to get the corpses of the affected people. None of them survived the incident because most of them were burnt beyond recognition.

“I met about 10 burnt bodies. They were packed inside a sack by officials of the FRSC.

“The tanker driver lost control of the vehicle and entered the ditch around 4:30p.m. The people started trooping to the place of the incident, scooping the fuel until the ugly incident happened around 6p.m.

“What actually happened was that the fuel started spilling into a stream in the community while the residents continue to scoop the fuel with buckets and kegs until the explosion occurred.

“Unfortunately, a woman was cooking in her kitchen when the inflammable product on the water caught fire, burning the woman to death while the fire travelled back to the tanker.

"A pregnant woman crossing the stream with three other minors were caught in the river and were burnt beyond recognition.

“No one could move to save them. Some other people who were close to the tanker were also badly affected. Their remains were packed this morning.”

Another local, Awalu Saliu, from Sokoto State, told newsmen that “The tanker fell around 4:30p.m.

“I heard about it and I drove to this place from the town. Many people were taking fuel. The rain had stopped.

“After some time, we heard something like a boom. The fire started coming. There was another boom.

“Over 100 people scooping fuel directly from the tanker ran away. I also ran. I saw people carrying fuel and being trailed by the fire.

“Many people would have died if the fire had started from the tanker. But it started where the water flowed to the residence of a woman who was cooking. The woman died instantly.”

Meanwhile, the state Sector Commander of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Ezekiel Son-Allah, confirmed that only eight persons scooping fuel died in the fire incident.

Ezekiel Son-Allah said that they were burnt following an explosion.

According to him, a white fuel tanker with no registration number lost control due to speed. Some residents of a close-by village stormed the scene and started scooping fuel spilt from the fallen tanker.

"But unfortunately, the tanker exploded, burning eight persons who were scooping fuel to death.” he added.

The FRSC boss said the tanker driver and motor boy managed to escape from the scene unhurt.

He said the FRSC rescue team had deposited the remains of the victims at the morgue of the General Hospital in Ore.


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