KINSHASA Democratic Republic of Congo (Xinhua)
-- President Joseph Kabila of the
Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has declared a three-day
national mourning for more than 50 people who died in a highway
traffic tragedy on Saturday on a national highway in the
country’s western province of Kongo Central.
The president also
asked for a full assistance to the victims and organizations of
funerals for the dead in the accident, according to a statement
of the Presidency carried by the national television RTNC.
At the site of the
accident in Mbuba village, traces of the fire are still visible,
and several charred vehicles remain on the main road.
Xinhua that the gas tanker truck from Matadi to Kinshasa
tragically crashed into a parked truck, triggering the fire
which quickly spread to nearby homes and vehicles and caused
human casualties and material damage.
Other witnesses said
that the vehicle exploded when hundreds of people were around
the tanker vehicle looking for gasoline that was flowing to the
“The toll continues
to evolve so far, especially for those who are burned to the
second degree by fire. We try to do our best to evacuate the
maximum possible casualties to hospitals in Kinshasa for
appropriate care,” said DRC Health Minister Oly Ilunga, who
visited the scene.
Apart from local and
national authorities, the UN Stabilization Mission in the DRC
has also deployed several ambulances to evacuate the seriously
wounded to the Congolese hospital in Kinshasa.
Kabila has called
for an immediate investigation to the incident. Several similar
incidents have already been reported across the country in the
past years. In 2010, a tanker truck overturned in South Kivu
province, killing around 200 people.
More than 50 dead from tank
truck fire in DRC
KINSHASA Democratic Republic of the
Congo (Xinhua) -- More than 50 people
died on Saturday morning in a tank truck fire at the Mbuba
village in the Kongo Central Province, west of Kinshasa, the
capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, according to an
considerable material damage at the scene of the fire, according
to an statement of local authorities.
According to Atu
Matubuana, interim governor of the province, the tanker truck
with gasoline, which came from Matadi, capital city of the
province, to Kinshasa, crashed into a parked truck.
The shock caused a
fire that quickly spread to the houses nearby, resulting in
casualties and material damage.
Matadi deployed a local rescue team to help the local community
at the scene of the fire.
The Kongo Central
Province is home to the Matadi and Boma ports, which link the
country to various international river traffic.