Disaster struck the commercial city of Onitsha, Anambra State on Sunday, when a tanker went out of control, and slammed into a motor park, and burst in flames killing about 50 people, some of them burnt beyond recognition.
About 15 buses were also burnt in the incident which happened at the busy Asaba Park on Upper Iweka Roundabout.
It was gathered that that some “newspaper free readers”, at newsstands were among the victims.
Eyewitnesses said that one of the buses was loading passengers in the park near the scene of the incident when the flames consumed it and three motorcycles at about 3pm.
One of them, who gave his name simply as Okechukwu, said the driver of the tanker was descending the Upper Iweka Road from the Enugu-Nkpor Road when he lost control of the vehicle.
He added, “We learnt that the tanker suffered a brake failure and the driver lost control.
“I think he tried to stop the vehicle with some of the barriers on the road, but unfortunately the tanker rammed into the park”, and caught fire.
Okechukwu said the tanker was on its way to Asaba in Delta State when the incident happened.
The Anambra State Commissioner of Police, Hosea Karma, who visited the scene of the incident with senior police officers of the command, could be seen directing the evacuation of the charred remains of the victims.
Karma described the incident as “tragic and unfortunate.”
The Commissioner of Police said, “All the persons inside the buses ─ I think about 12 buses ─ were burnt beyond recognition.
“Scores of other victims, who were still alive, were immediately rushed to a nearby hospital.
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