TWO persons were killed in a kerosene explosion while others sustained serious injuries In Umuebe village, Ezzamgbo community in Ohaukwu Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.
The deceased were; Joy Ituma and Joshua Ituma, who were six and four years old respectively, while others also sustained serious injuries and were receiving treatment in the hospital were Mrs. Christiana Idenyi, 34, and Uchenna Idoko,17. The two children and their uncle were rushed to the Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki (FETHA) where the two children died.
It was gathered that the kerosene, which allegedly caused the explosions was procured from a filling station located at Ezzamgbo junction in the area was adulterated. According to the eyewitnesses, the kerosene explosions occurred when the victims wanted to light their lanterns in their respective homes. They disclosed that the families had bought kerosene at the same fuel station.
One of the victims who sustained injury, Mrs. Christiana Idenyi, lamented that the explosion occurred immediately she struck the matches to light her lantern. She said it gave her serious burns which affected her two legs. “I went to the filling station and bought the kerosene. I poured it into the lamp immediately I returned. So, immediately I struck the matches, it exploded. As you can see, my legs, hands, and other parts of my body were burnt”, she said.
The deceased persons’ uncle, Chukwudi Idoko, who was deeply saddened by the incident, confirmed that the kerosene was bought from the said filling station.
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Loveth Odah, confirmed the incident, adding that the fuel station’s manager, Emmanuel Omiyi, and the kerosene pump attendant, Anayo Ayu, have been arrested for interrogation.
She said that samples have been taken from the facility for laboratory test by experts in petroleum products.
Also speaking, the Chief Consultant at the Burns and Plastic Surgery Unit of Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki (FETHA), Nnadozie Ugochukwu, said “the four-year-old was 100 per cent burnt while the six-year-old was about 95 per cent burnt. The only thing that remained was a little part of her hairs. The 17-year-old boy sustained about 57 per cent burns.
And because they stayed so long inside that place, they had difficulty in breathing even by the time they came.”
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