Oil Tanker Explodes, Kills 204 in Congo

Many victims were indoors watching World Cup match
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 3, 2010 6:32 AM CDT
Map locates North Kivu province, Congo. An oil tanker overturned and exploded in South Kivu, killing at least 200.   (Associated Press)

(Newser) – At least 204 people were killed in Congo when a tanker truck transporting oil flipped over and exploded overnight in the east of the country, a Red Cross official said today. The truck was carrying fuel from neighboring Tanzania when it overturned at high speed late yesterday in the village of Sange, around 60 miles outside the regional capital, Bukavu, said a Red Cross official .

Speaking by telephone from Bukavu, she said the toll could rise since Red Cross workers were still collecting bodies from the scene. UN-funded Radio Okapi reported a similar death toll, and said some local residents had rushed to steal the leaking fuel when it burst into flames. A UN spokesman said peacekeepers were investigating the blast, and that no UN troops were killed.

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