Hope as three fire victims leave ICU, more doing well

24Aug 2019
Henry Mwangonde
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Hope as three fire victims leave ICU, more doing well

Three out of 14 victims of the oil tanker explosion in Morogoro a fortnight ago who were admitted to the Muhimbili National Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit (ICU) have been shifted to regular wards after showing improvement.

The hospital’s spokesman Aminiel Eligaesha.

The hospital’s spokesman Aminiel Eligaesha told reporters in Dar es Salaam that out the 15 patients who are in the hospital, one died early yesterday but the others are doing well with only 11 remaining in the ICU.

 According to Eligaesha even those in the ICU, few are showing some improvement  and that soon they may be transferred to regular wards.

“There is hope that they may survive because we have seen some improvement  in recent days despite losing one out the 15 who were in the ICU,” he said.

Last week, MNH   explained  why there was low rate of survivors,    saying they suffered severe burns of between 70 to 100 per cent, which made efforts to save  lives a matter of chance.

Dr Edwin Mrema a plastic surgeon at the facility said the victims inhaled toxic fumes from the blast and had their internal organs badly damaged, Dr Mrema noting that even area residents who tried to help covered the victims, which exacerbated their injuries.

The surgeon stated that given the lack of proper first aid after the explosion, those who were rushed to the facility 200 kilometres away arrived in a critical condition.

Victims were mainly from those who were trying to collect leaking petrol from an overturned fuel tanker but it later exploded.

Witnesses said the tanker tipped over as it tried to avoid a motorcycle, and locals quickly converged on the scene to collect fuel.

The explosion was triggered when a man tried to retrieve the truck's battery, creating sparks that ignited the fuel,  police officials asserted.

Many of the victims were motorbike taxi drivers who rushed to the scene to try to siphon off leaking petrol. A video posted on social media taken before the explosion showed dozens of people carrying yellow jerry cans around the tanker.

The blast, which took place Saturday August 10 is the latest in a series of similar disasters in Africa and at least the third this year.


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