Gas lorry explosion kills 10 children
KABUL: An Afghan health official said 11 people, mostly children, died when a lorry transporting gas canisters exploded outside the western city of Herat.
Rafiq Sherzai, spokesman for the Herat Regional Hospital, said yesterday that 18 people were also wounded in the blast late on Monday.
He said the blast happened inside the compound of a gas supply company adjacent to a camp for internally displaced people.
The explosion was so powerful that the burning lorry was flung into the camp, he said.
Of the 11 dead, 10 were children, he said. Four of the wounded were sent to Iran for treatment with burns to more than 90% of their body, Mr Sherzai says.
“A massive fire swept through a gas terminal in Herat city on Monday night,” said Abdul Raouf Ahmadi, police spokesman for Herat province. He said firemen were battling the blaze for six hours.
“The preliminary reports do not show what caused the explosion of the gas tanker, but an investigation is ongoing,” he said.
Several homes were damaged, he said.
The terminal is located in a residential area of Herat city and supplies gas to the western provinces.
Gas explosions are not uncommon in Afghanistan, where bottled gas is used for household cooking nationwide.