Dar es Salaam, Tanzania (CNN)At least 61 people have been killed and 70 injured when an oil tanker exploded on a busy road in Tanzania, government spokesperson Hassan Abbas said.
The vehicle overturned on the road in Morogoro, 175 kilometers (109 miles) west of Dar es Salaam, according to Kebwe Stephene, the regional commissioner of Morogoro.
Following the crash, the wrecked tanker attracted a large crowd of people trying to collect fuel, Stephene said. When it exploded, many were caught in the blast.
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The explosion happened around 8:30 a.m. local time (1:30 a.m. ET). Abbas said the rescue operations finished by 3 p.m. local time. The scene was cordoned off and all bodies were removed from the scene into a local hospital for identification, he said.
Those injured in the blast were treated at the government-run Morogoro Referral Hospital, Abbas added.
The road connecting Morogoro with Dar es Salaam, the country’s most populous city and former capital, is one of Tanzania’s key throughways, used to transport imports and exports to and from the coast.