The death toll rose to at least 60 after a fuel tanker exploded in Haiti’s northern port city of Cap-Haitien, a local official said.
The explosion which happened on Tuesday, injured dozens of people who have been transported to hospitals in Cap-Haitien, Haiti’s second-largest city, Deputy Mayor Patrick Almonor told reporters, describing the blast as “horrible.”
“Firefighters are making an initial assessment to determine the number of houses burned” as a result of the explosion, Xinhua news agency cited Almonor.
The government announced it will install field hospitals to attend to the injured as area hospitals were overwhelmed with victims.
According to the deputy mayor, the explosion occurred on Tuesday morning after the fuel truck tried to avoid a motorcycle and overturned. Some fuel spilled out of the truck, drawing people around to collect.
Haiti has been grappling with severe fuel shortages and skyrocketing gas prices, which were triggered by the action of armed gangs. UN humanitarians warned on October 25 that the difficulty in delivering fuel in Haiti is likely to cost lives.