By Rafiu Ajakaye
LAGOS, Nigeria (AA) – At least seven people are confirmed dead and several others severely burnt following a gas explosion at a petrol station in Nigeria's north-central Nasarawa state, an official said Monday.
“At the moment, we have seven deaths, but this may rise in the next hours. Dozens had serious burns in an explosion at Monaco petrol station in Lafia today. We’ve currently identified 37 people with burns,” Akwanga Salami, an official at the state firefighting agency, told Anadolu Agency.
Akwanga said the fire resulted from a massive gas spill at the petrol station in the state capital.
“The spill started yesterday, and there had been efforts to avoid an explosion as vehicles were diverted from that route. But a car somehow found itself along that route, resulting in a huge explosion,” he added.
Locals, however, claimed there were more than 10 casualties from the explosion.
“After officials succeeded in bringing the explosion under control, there were over 10 deaths, while hospitals are still battling to save those who were seriously burnt,” Lawani David, a native of the area, told Anadolu Agency.