'Huge' blast at gas station rocks Ghana's Accra

Violet Powell
October 9, 2017

"Unfortunately, there are a number of fatalities, and we are now working hard to establish the exact number of the dead", he said, adding that there are also many injured. "There are quite a number also injured".

Frightened residents ran from the explosion, which sent a giant fireball high into the sky above the city, and several fire trucks and ambulances were deployed to the scene.

"All of a sudden, we heard a "boom" and the flash of an explosion, which made the building just shake and the lights went out", he said. "It was like refugees moving away from a war-torn zone".

At the scene of the fire on Sunday, scattered fruit and broken coconuts from street vendors were strewn near the wreckage next to burnt-out cars and a fuel lorry, a Reuters witness said.

Dramatic video of the explosion late Saturday posted on social media showed a blazing mushroom cloud.

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On Twitter, Accra city officials warned of an explosion in the Legon and Madina areas around 7:30 p.m. local time.

The petrol station is near a transport terminal and close to some hostels for the University of Ghana in Accra.

In May, at least six people were killed in a tanker explosion at a factory in Takoradi, in Ghana's Western Region and back in June 2015, around 150 were killed after an explosion at a gas station in Accra.

Like many teeming African cities, Accra's infrastructure has failed to keep up with its population, which has shot up to 7 million.

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