BOLOGNA, ITALY—A tanker truck explosion left two people dead and 70 others hospitalized with severe burn injuries. The explosion occurred on Monday, August 6 at around 2 p.m. in the northeastern city of Bologna which was the result of a traffic accident.
The tanker that caused the explosion was carrying liquefied petroleum gas, a highly flammable substance, also known as propane. According to official police footage, the tanker truck failed to come to a full stop before rear-ending another truck in front of it, causing the gas to combust. After the start of the explosion, another truck rear-ended the tanker truck.
The traffic accident became deadly at Bologna Casalecchio and A-14 junction from Bologna to Taranto, reported KTLA. The explosion spanned eight lanes affecting the highway, and residents of the surrounding area. Nearly 70 people, at least two of which were officers, were hospitalized and treated for injuries including second degree and third degree burns.
The explosion, which left the A-14 junction damaged and in need of repair caused secondary fires in car lots below, resulting in other vehicle fires. The affected highway, which provided access to Florence and Rome, has been closed through traffic.
Virginio Merola, the mayor of Bologna, expressed his condolences on behalf of the whole city to families who were injured during the explosion. Merola thanked those who helped the city during the incident.
“I thank with all my heart all the people who have let the help and have been busy, we face a great tragedy that involved not only a section of the highway but a neighborhood of ours #Bologna. #BorgoPanigale,” read the Merola’s tweet, translated from Italian by Microsoft.