About 10 people have so far been confirmed dead in an explosion, which occurred, Thursday, after a truck collided with a motorcycle at Appiatse, in the Prestea Huni-Valley Municipality, Western Region.
Many others who sustained various injuries have been rescued and sent to the Bogoso Health Centre, Tarkwa Municipal, Apinto, Prestea and Wassa Akropong Government hospitals for medical attention.
The Municipal National Disaster Management Coordinator (NADMO) in-charge of Prestea Huni-Valley, Mr Francis Abeiku Yankah, told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) that the incident occurred around 1230 hours, along the Bogoso- Kumasi Highway.
“I was in a community closer to Appiatse when l heard an explosion. I followed up and had information that a truck carrying mining explosives had collided with a ricksaw at Appiatse and the container fell off the truck, and resulted in an explosion when the driver attempted to save the rider,” he explained.
“A lot of people quickly rushed to the scene and about one 100 vehicles were parked from both stretches of the road. There was a second explosion resulting in a fire, which spread quickly leaving many dead and injured.”
The Municipal NADMO Coordinator added that, “Many people have lost their lives because the entire Appiatse town has collapsed as result of the explosion”.
Personnel from the Ghana National Fire Service and the Ghana Police Service, Ghana Armed Forces in the Municipality are assisting to rescue the injured and retrieve the dead bodies from the debris.
Meanwhile, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, in expressing his condolence to the families affected by the tragedy, urged calm and
asked the security agencies and NADMO to urgently provide rescue and relief operations.
Preliminary investigation, the Ghana Police Service said, established that the ‘mining explosive vehicle’ was traveling from Tarkwa to the Chirano Mines.
The Police have since taken charge of the situation providing security to enable the emergency workers, including the Ghana National Fire Service, NADMO and the Ambulance Service to manage the situation.
It advised the public to move out of the area to nearby towns for their safety.
“An appeal has also been made to nearby towns to open up their classrooms, churches etc to accommodate surviving victims,” the Police said in a statement, adding that reinforcement of resources and personnel had been deployed to the area to assist in the handling of the incident.