There was pandemonium on Friday morning as a tanker loaded with diesel went up in flames at a filling station along the Nnewi-Nnobi Road, Nnewi, Anambra State.
It was gathered that fire raged through gutters and spread to shops along the road creating fears of the fire reaching buildings, a development that threw residents into panic.
An eyewitness, Mr. Val Okonkwo, who runs a business close to the filling station, said the incident happened when a truck loaded with diesel attempted to transfer the product to another smaller tanker at the filling station.
He said, “The fire incident started a few minutes after 8 am on Friday morning when a big truck was transferring diesel to a smaller truck at the filling station. The hose of a generator they were using to do the transfer was said to have pulled out and the diesel then spread on the generator which started the fire.
“As the fire started, the people at the filling station tried in vain to put it off with the available fire extinguisher. The fire became increasingly high and the driver of the smaller tanker quickly drove off to enable the bigger tanker to also drive out, but before they could complete this process they fire had spread out of the filling station to the road and both sides of the gutters on the road.
“The driver of the big tanker was nearly trapped by the fire, he escaped by whiskers. And the diesel flowed along the two drainages burning anything on its way, but the Nnewi Fire Service quickly arrived at the scene, combated the fire and succeeded in putting it off.”
It was gathered that no life was lost in the incident, but all the dispensing meters at the filling station, a motorcycle, generator and the long truck were all burnt. Also burnt were deep freezers, some shops and anything that stood along the track the fire travelled.