The number of fatalities from the Monday, July 1 tanker explosion at Ahumbe village along Makurdi-Aliade-Otukpo highway in Gwer East LGA of area of Benue state has risen to 60, the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) has confirmed.

Aliyu Baba, the Sector Commander, FRSC, Benue State, revealed this statistics on Thursday during a visit to Governor Samuel Ortom at the Benue State Government House.

“The tanker fire claimed 60 lives. There were additional deaths after the first incident,” he said.

Reacting to the development, Ortom admonished Benue residents to desist from the habit of rushing to scoop petroleum products whenever a tanker falls on the road.

He said that such acts were detrimental to their safety.

The governor said, “Let me say it repeatedly to our people: do not look for any free product, not just petroleum products but any other item. The price is not worth it as it also involves other human lives. We have lost 60 people for no just cause.

“Some are still in the hospital. In the end, some of the victims will have to live with deformities for the rest of their lives. Things that are free usually come with price higher than the free items. People should work with their hands, there are many opportunities in Benue. We also lost two fire service fighters who were trying to put out the fire,” the Governor said.

Currently, 101 victims of the explosion are being hospitalised at eight different hospitals in the state for various degrees of burns.

 

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