Kenya tanker blaze deaths at 122

February 2, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 2 – Ten more patients have succumbed to severe burn injuries, following Saturday’s fatal oil tanker explosion in Molo, bringing the death toll to 122.

Seven patients died on Sunday night while undergoing treatment at the Rift Valley Provincial Hospital, while three died at the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) on Monday morning.

The trio were among 39 patients airlifted from Molo to various hospitals within Nairobi for specialised treatment.

KNH Public Relations Officer, Simon Ithai told Capital News that the hospital was now caring for 21 patients, out of the 25 that were admitted to the facility.

“Unfortunately we lost two patients yesterday (Sunday) by around 9 pm and by this morning (Monday) we had lost two more so in total we have lost four patients,” Mr Ithai stated.

He said that out of the 21 who are fighting for their lives at the hospital, 11 were admitted in the burns unit, two are in the wards, seven in the emergency ward and one in the Intensive Care Unit.

He said the public has responded very well to the appeals for blood and called on Kenyans to continue donating blood.

On Sunday, Public Health Minister Beth Mugo said that about 1,000 units of blood were required to treat the patients who are admitted to KNH, Nairobi, Aga Khan and Mater Hospitals, including various other medical facilities in the Rift Valley.

Rift Valley Medical Officer of Health Dr Benedict Osare said on Monday that no more deaths had been reported in Molo.

The accident occurred on Saturday when an overturned petrol tanker exploded, as several people attempted to scoop up fuel that was leaking from it.

Meanwhile, First Lady Lucy Kibaki is expected to tour the health facility on Monday morning to visit patients recovering from the disaster. She is expected to be accompanied by Medical Services Permanent Secretary Professor James Ole Kiyiapi.

Her visit comes as one week of mourning began on Monday for more than 140 people, who lost their lives in the Molo explosion, and a massive fire at the Nakumatt Downtown store.

The Kenyan flag will be flown at half-mast for the entire week, after the President declared seven days of mourning in memory of those affected by the double tragedy.


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