At least 84 killed in oil tanker explosion in Sierra Leone

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At least 84 people have died and dozens more are injured after a massive explosion in Sierra Leone's capital, Freetown, BBC reported.

The blast happened after a 40ft-long oil tanker collided with another vehicle at a busy junction in the city.

Footage broadcast by local media outlets showed badly charred bodies in the streets surrounding the tanker.

Mayor Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr described seeing "harrowing" footage but said the scale of the damage was not yet clear.

In a post on Facebook she said there were "rumours that more than 100 people have lost their lives", although there is as yet no official death toll.

The state-run morgue has received 91 bodies so far, its manager told Reuters news agency.

The explosion is believed to have happened at a junction outside the busy Choithram Supermarket in the Wellington region of the city at around 22.00 GMT on Friday.

Brima Bureh Sesay, the head of the Sierre Leone's National Disaster Management Agency, told local media that the incident had been "a terrible, terrible accident".

The port city, which is home to just over a million people, has faced several serious disasters in recent years.

In March, more than 80 people were injured after a major fire in one of the city's slums left more than 5,000 people displaced.

And in 2017 over 1,000 people were killed after heavy rains led to a mudslide that swept through the city, leaving around 3,000 people homeless.


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