Italian police: 2 dead, 60-70 injured in explosion

Leroy Wright
August 7, 2018

An explosion caused by an accident involving a truck carrying flammable liquid has injured 56 people and killed one, according to Italian news agency ANSA.

Giovanni Carella, a city official, said the vehicle was probably carrying liquefied gas.

Thick black smoke was seen rising up in the air from miles away from the site of the blast. It said some of the injured had been hit by flying glass when windows in nearby buildings exploded.

Speaking to television news channel Sky TG24, police officers said that the extremely high temperatures caused by the blast and fire - which took firefighters almost two hours to put out - caused the road to collapse. "There was panic in the neighbourhood, because it wasn't clear what happened".

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The windows of many houses in the area are reported to have burst.

Authorities said they were working to finish the on-sight investigation so highway officials could reclaim the damaged road and adjacent lanes and begin to rebuild the roadway, which has always been subject to major traffic backups. The interchange connects two highways linking northern Italy with the Adriatic coast.

Video of the incident showed the tanker truck, which contained inflammable materials, slamming into the back of a lorry which had come to a halt because of heavy traffic.

The explosion occurred near Borgo Paginale to west of the city, very close to Bologna airport, about 2 pm (1200 GMT), the Italian fire service said on Twitter.

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