Horrible Explosion, Fire Lead To at Least 3 Deaths

Horrible Explosion, Fire Lead To at Least 3 Deaths

(LibertyInsider.org) – A massive explosion fueled by a gas truck caused a fire that tore through Nairobi’s Embakasi district on February 2, killing at least three people and injuring an estimated 280 others. The accident, which occurred at a makeshift gas cylinder refilling depot, caused considerable damage to residential and commercial properties in the area and set off a catastrophic blaze that continued to spread well into the next morning.

Local officials say the fire started when a truck loaded with fuel from a depot suddenly exploded, triggering a devastating chain reaction of events. A massive fireball careened into a gas cylinder, jettisoning it out and away from the zone like a missile. It eventually struck the Oriental Godown textiles warehouse, which immediately caught fire.

The blaze itself began at 11:30 p.m. but continued to rage long into the night as local residents and emergency services scrambled to respond. This shortlist includes Alfred Juma, whose neighbors tipped him off that something was wrong before the fire began. He immediately jumped into action, going door-to-door to tell people to leave.

Amid the chaos and destruction, Juma made a courageous choice that ultimately saved at least three lives, including his own. When he came upon two small children amid the carnage, he quickly ushered them to a nearby sewage ditch for cover. The trio remained there in hiding until the explosions finally ceased.

Juma’s actions during the tragedy came at a significant personal cost, as he sustained severe burns to several areas of his body. Neither Juma nor his family were at home at the time of the blaze, but both the residence itself and everything within it were destroyed.

Witnesses who spoke to the media reported that unusual noises emanated from the station in the minutes and hours before the accident occurred. Some grew concerned that a leak or explosion was imminent. Tragically, others only realized they were in danger when they heard the first explosions from within their own homes, leaving them with little to no time to react.

Notably, Kenya’s Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) has since stated that the petroleum plant was operating illegally within a residential area at the time. An entity had reportedly applied for a permit to build the plant at least three times over the past year. The EPRA rejected all of its requests, citing the entity’s failure to satisfy safety standards.

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