|Thursday, 22nd September, 2011||
|BY REUBEN OLITAFour people were confirmed dead and six suffered severe burns when a petrol tanker destined for Uganda lost control and plunged into a ditch near Sio River bridge on Kisumu-Busia highway on Tuesday.
The six critically injured people were transferred to Kakamega Provincial Hospital for specialised treatment.
The police said the number of the casualties could rise since many people were believed to have drowned in the river whose marshy swamp had flooded.
Dr. Janerose Ambuchi of the Busia District Hospital confirmed that four people had died, while 45 were admitted.
Ambuchi said the people had suffered burns, which heighted the possibility of more fatalities.
Sources said the incident occurred at 8:00pm when a man attempted to remove a battery from the fuel truck this caused sparks which started the fire after an explosion.
Billy Barasa, 16, one of the survivors, said he was near the overturned truck when a man tried to take off the battery.
Another victim, Jackson Mugeni, 23, said he was standing on the Kisumu-Busia road about 50 metres from the scene when he saw an explosion and within minutes his legs had caught fire.
“Sensing danger I jumped into the river and swam to the other side,” Mugeni said adding they had not eaten since.
He appealed to the government to provide food to the survivors.