Four dead as fuel tanker explodes in Bunyangabu

The fuel tanker in flames at Kasunganyanja town along Fort Portal-Kasese Road. Four people have so far been confirmed dead. PHOTO | ALEX ASHABA

Four people have been confirmed dead by police after a fuel tanker hit a stationary lorry at Kasunganyaja trading centre, along Fort Portal-Kasese Road in Bunyangabu District.

According to Mr Edward Kyaligonza, a journalist who was at the scene, the fuel tanker was heading to Kasese from Fort Portal side and when it reached the slope along Kasunganyanja trading centre, the driver reportedly lost control before the tanker hit the lorry that was being loaded with matooke.

“The fuel tanker after hitting the lorry, rolled down into the ditch and caught fire, people in the nearby shops have closed and run away for their dear lives,” Kyaligonza said.

Mr Kuraisi Ndyabahika, a survivor and driver of the lorry that was knocked said, “We had just packed to load two bunches of matooke then I saw a truck descending the slope while meandering and hit my lorry, I fled for my dear life towards the nearby banana plantation where I fell down, the tanker fell into a ditch and caught fire, people rescued me but fire had caught my hair and skin.”

Ndyabahika who is now admitted at Kibiito health Centre IV said they were headed for Kampala. He said at the lorry he had three other people; Laban Mutooro, Yasin Ndyabahika and a one Sunday (a woman), the Matooke buyer from Kyegegwa.

“But now I don’t know where they are, is my lorry there, or it got burnt? Are the dead my people or not?” a puzzled Ndyabahika asked on his hospital bed.

When contacted, the Police spokesperson for Rwenzori West, Mr Vincent Twesige confirmed the incident and said the four who have died were loading matooke onto the lorry.

“We received the information about the incident at around midday and we rushed at the scene with fire brigade vehicle and team put out the fire” Twesige said, adding, “We are still finding out if there are more causalities”

Fire also destroyed some gardens around the scene.

Kasunganyanja is an old black spot alongside many others on Fort Portal-Kasese road, a road that is still under construction by Ms China Wu Yi.

Last week ago, 10 people died at Kihogo village near Rugendabara trading centre in Kasese District another black spot along the Fort Portal-Kasese road after two accidents happened.

According to police, black spots along Fort Portal-Kasese road include; Rubona stock farm, Kasunganyanja, Rwimi Bridge, Karungibate in Hima town council and Kikorongo trading centre (along Kasese-Bwera road).