By Sunny A. Ijomah
A couple and their four children on Tuesday night, were reportedly burnt in a gas explosion in their residence at No 30 Izundu Road, Abubo Nnewichi in Nnewi North LGA of Anambra State.
The incident which occurred at about 6.15pm, was said to have emanated from a cooking gas cylinder which ignited fire in their 3-bed room flat residence.
The victims, Mr. Ebube Okeke, 40, his wife, Chioma, 32, together with their four kids, between the ages of three and nine, were at the first floor apartment of the two-storey building when the explosion occurred.
A resident, who simply gave her name as Justina, said the sound of the explosion reverberated across the premises, which sent everybody scampering for safety.
“There was a gas leakage from the cylinder at the apartment, but when it was noticed by the father who tried to stop it, it was already at an exploding point and immediately went off.
“The explosion pulled down the walls of the apartment and extended to other sections of the building with some other occupants sustaining degrees of burns,” she added.
She however said men of fire service arrived much later when the situation had already been brought under control by neighbors.
Our correspondent gathered that the victims were initially rushed to Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital (NAUTH), Nnewi, but were later referred to Enugu Orthopedic Hospital following high degree of burns.
Confirming the incident, the State Police spokesperson, Mr. Haruna Mohammed (SP), said Police patrol team led by DPO Otolo Division, Mr. Uro Justin (CSP), had since visited the scene.
He said the area was cordoned off to prevent hoodlums from taking advantage of the situation, adding that investigation to ascertain circumstances surrounding the incident had commenced.
“The Command enjoins members of the public to always apply safety precautions when using cooking gas cylinders to avoid recurrence of similar ugly incident,” he added.