Kerosene explosions kill 4, injure 14

One of the injured victims in Akwa Ibom
One of the injured victims in Akwa Ibom

Kerosene explosions have killed at least four persons and have severely burnt 14 others in multiple accidents in the last 15 weeks in Akwa Ibom state, Dr Aniekeme Uwa, chairman of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) said.

Uwah made this known on Friday in Uyo when he was speaking at stakeholders’ sensitisation meeting on kerosene fire incidents organised by the office of the Senior Special Assistant on Petroleum Matters.

The NMA boss said that within 15 weeks from September 22, 2016 to January 7 this year, 18 kerosene explosions occurred in the state.

He said that statistics available at the University of Uyo Teaching Hospital (UUTH) revealed that all the four dead persons were females and five of the injured were males.

Uwah said that kerosene (also known as AGO – Automotive Gas & Oils) explosions often occurred through adulteration of the genuine products and wrongful use of the product in stoves and lanterns.

He said that the explosions usually led to loss of skin, which according to him, “is our major protector against infection”.

“Skin burn leads to loss of water and causes dehydration and lung infection resulting from inhalation of fume. Let stop this avoidable death,” Uwah advised.

He commended Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom for the support given to the victims of kerosene explosion in the state through purchase of drugs and other consumables.

The Senior Special Assistant to the governor on Petroleum Matters, Obong Essien Esema, said that the meeting was targeted at surface tank dealers and peddlers of AGO.

Esema told the stakeholders that part of the measures of preventing kerosene explosion caused by adulteration was to get all surface tank dealers and peddlers registered by his office.

He advised the surface tank dealers and peddlers to get affiliated to well known filling stations for the supply of the product.

“Henceforth, no more hawking of kerosene, only filling stations and surface tank dealers will sell kerosene in the state.

“No surface tank dealer or peddler should buy AGO from unknown source. If you don’t buy from them, they will have no market,” Esema said.

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