More details continue to emerge of the Northern By-pass accident in which a fuel tanker caught fire killing at least 27 people and injuring more than 30 others. Inside Ward A at Mulago Hospital, a URN reporter has counted at least 22 people who are admitted there with severe burns all over the body. At least two doctors and a team of nurses are attending to the injured, most of them men.
Kampala Metropolitan police spokesperson Ibin Senkumbi now confirms that 27 bodies were pulled from the accident scene near the Hoima Road Round-about after the accident which occurred at about 10pm on Saturday.
He also confirms that 22 people with severe burns are being treated at Mulago Hospital. The police spokesperson however says it is hard to establish the actual number of injuries since those with minor injuries ran away from the scene.
Inside Ward A at Mulago Hospital, a URN reporter has counted at least 22 people who are admitted there with severe burns all over the body. At least two doctors and a team of nurses are attending to the injured, most of them men. Many people are gathered outside looking for their relatives but the hospital management is yet to allow them inside the ward.
Senkumbi suspects the fire to have been started by one of the boda boda cyclists who had rushed to siphon fuel from the tanker after it had overturned following a head-on collision with a Toyota Ipsum. The cyclist, according to Senkumbi, was trying to get away after siphoning fuel but when he started his engine it started the fire.
Senkumbi also says it is difficult to determine the number of other vehicles that were burnt or damaged adding that some people abandoned their cars after seeing the fire ball. Police sources say an unspecified number of people had gathered at the accident scene to siphon free fuel when the fire started.
Shortly after the accident, State House issued a statement from President Yoweri Museveni, who was in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania participating in the Smart Partnership International Dialogue. In the statement, the president said he had learnt with great shock of the tragedy “in which vehicles have been burnt by a fuel tanker at Namungona causing loss of lives.” The statement added that the president was closely monitoring efforts of the “Police and Health workers at the scene."