Accra | Jagran News Desk: At least 17 people and over 59 were severely injured in a massive explosion in Ghana's rural Western Region on Thursday. Hundreds of buildings were razed when a truck carrying explosives to a gold mine collided with a motorcycle. Unverified videos posted on social media showed a large, smouldering blast site in which buildings had been reduced to piles of wood, brick and twisted metal.

In one video, two bodies are seen crumpled on the ground, covered in dust. A photo shared by a local council member showed a deep crater at the epicentre of the blast, onlookers peering down from its rim. Seji Saji Amedonu, deputy director-general of the National Disaster Management Organisation, said 500 buildings had been destroyed.

(Jagran English does not verify the veracity of the video)

A regional emergency official told local media he had seen 10 dead bodies. "The public has been advised to move out of the area to nearby towns for their safety while recovery efforts are underway," the police said in a statement. Nearby towns have been asked to open up public spaces including classrooms and churches to survivors, the police said.

Ghana President Nana Akufo-Addo tweeted he had been informed of the incident and confirmed there had been deaths. "It is a truly ... tragic incident, and I extend, on behalf of Government, deep condolences to the families of the deceased," he said.

The explosion occurred in Apiate between the towns of Bogoso and Bawdie when a motorcycle went under a truck carrying explosives owned by a company called Maxam that was en route to the Chirano gold mine, run by Toronto-based Kinross. A Kinross spokesperson confirmed the incident, saying it occurred 140 kilometres (87 miles) from the mine.

(With Agency Inputs)

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan