The death toll in the Atomic Junction gas explosion has risen to seven – four at the Police Hospital and three at the 37 Military Hospital, government has officially announced.
One hundred and thirty-two persons are injured out of which 64 have been treated and discharged, the Information Minister Mustapha Hamid said in a statement Sunday.
The statement said 68 injured persons including a fire officer at the Police Hospital are still receiving treatment with two others in critical condition at the Intensive Care Unit of the 37 Military Hospital.
Investigation has commenced into the cause of fire after a fuel station caught fire when a gas station exploded Saturday evening at the Atomic Junction.
It took about 10 hours for the Ghana National Fire Service to bring the situation under total control.
Meanwhile, vice president Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has led a government delegation to visit the various medical centres where the victims are receiving treatment.
Speaking at the gas explosion site Sunday, Dr. Bawumia noted government will issue a “solid policy to deal with it once and for all.”
“This is one too many,” the vice president said after cutting short his trip in the Northern region to return to Accra.
Seven people have since lost their lives while trying to escape the explosion with about 40 injured persons currently on admission at the 37 Military Hospital. Two people are battling for their lives at the Intensive Care Unit of the military health facility.
“Some new policies are going to come in and those who will try to resist I don’t think they will be listened to because we have to put the lives of our people above anything else. We are going to move quite quickly to do it. We pretty much have an idea what we need to do,” Dr. Bawumia opined.
Sad day in Ghana
He described the gas explosion at Atomic Junction as a sad day for Ghana.
“On behalf of the president I will like to extend my condolences and our sympathies. All of Ghana have been affected and a major tragedy. This is one too many. This is about the eighth explosion in three years. We need a solid policy to deal with it once and for all. We owe it to the country and the government is going to take it seriously,” Dr. Bawumia assured.
He expressed his gratitude to the security agencies for working around the clock to bring the fire under control.
“I will like to on behalf of the president to thank our security for their timely intervention. Government is keeping this very much in focus and the president is being briefed on the event,” he added.
I’m devastated – Akufo-Addo
Meanwhile, President Akufo-Addo in a tweet said he is “devastated” over the loss of six lives in the gas explosion.
President Akufo-Addo has expressed his “deepest condolences to the families of the bereaved” and has wished the “injured speedy recovery.”
In a tweet on Sunday morning, the President said:
Government is resolved, now more than ever, to ensure such an incident does not occur again.
— Nana Akufo-Addo (@NAkufoAddo) October 8, 2017
Former President John Mahama has also been consoling the bereaved.