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    Friday, 30 June 2017

    Death toll rose to 177 as another 12 succumbed to burns

    MULTAN,June 30th: Twelve more injured of the Ahmadpur East oil-tanker fire incident succumbed to their burns  at Pak-Italian Modern Burn Unit of Nishtar Hospital Multan during last 24 hours , taking the death toll to a total of 177.The rescue teams had air-lifted total 65 injured to Multan from Ahmadpur East out of which 35 have so far breathed their last while the remaining 30 are being treated. Dr.Naheed Anjum Chaudhry incharge of Burn Unit told that a nine year old Muskan bibi was releived from the hospital after complete recovery.She had sustained 15 percent burns. He had  confirmed that Farhan, 18, Abdul Khaliq, 42, Sami Ullah, 16, and Fahad, 12, succumbed to their injuries last night. Chief Minister Punjab has suspended the services of six highway police officers including DSP while an inquiry team constituted by Punjab Government reached at Bahawalpur which would submit his report on July 5. Rana Saleem Afzal Deputy Commissioner Bahawalpur said that now number of casualties have increased to 177 and we have informed the Chief Minister secretriat so that more compensation cheques could be got issued. On the other hand, samples of 125 dead bodies have been sent for DNA test whereas more than 80 percent of people admitted in hospital are badly scorched. It is to be recalled that the tragedy had taken place when an oil-tanker in Ahmedpur East had overturned on the highway and while people were collecting leaking petrol, a spark had caused the area to catch fire and scores of people were burnt.
    The Shell oil company has submitted its primary probe into the oil tanker fire to the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra)which was rejected by Ogra describing it incomplete and short and it  has already activated its third party inspectors and is awaiting its findings.The report revealed “Shell contracted Tank Lorry No TLJ-352 involved in the incident was carrying 50,000 litres of motor gasoline. The transporter was Marwat Enterprises and was taking the fuel from Keamari to Vehari. The location of the incident near village Safeerwala was six kilometres from Ahmedpur Sharqya, approximately 794 kilometres from Keamari Installation.”Talking about the key factor, the report said: “The tank lorry was travelling at 35km/hr [We have the tracker report as evidence], which is within the speed limit. "As per our initial hauler investigation, a passenger bus after overtaking the tank lorry applied harsh break in front of the tank lorry. To avoid collision from behind, the driver moved the tank lorry to left hand side of the road on the soft shoulder, which resulted in rollover of the tank lorry.”It said, “Sadly, not realising the huge safety risk involved, people from the nearby village gathered to collect the spilled product in buckets/containers. Despite utmost effort by the local traffic authorities to manage the incident, a chaos erupted, which resulted in such a grave tragedy.”

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    Item Reviewed: Death toll rose to 177 as another 12 succumbed to burns Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Abdul Sattar Qamar