Dozens of people were killed on a roadside in Liberia after they rushed to scoop up fuel from an overturned tanker before it exploded, officials said.
Officials have said more than 40 people died in the blast on Tuesday, but the country’s health minister, Wilhelmina Jallah, said in a telephone interview that the number of fatalities could rise because an additional 83 people were injured.
A video circulating on social media showed people running from the explosion, some of them wrapped in flames, as thick, black smoke rose from the tanker.
“These guys risked their lives for little or nothing,” Jacob Vesselee, the regional traffic commander, said in a phone call.
Living standards are dire in Liberia, where more than four-fifths of the population do not have sufficient access to food, according to the World Bank, and prices for staples like rice and oil have soared over the past two years.
In November, Liberia held largely peaceful