An explosion that happened in Rumuekpe in Emuoha Local Government area of Rivers state has killed an unspecified number of persons on Friday.
Grace Iringe-Koko, Police Spokesperson in Rivers State, has confirmed the incident in a statement obtained by EnergyDay on Friday.
The Police Authorities confirmed that the explosion and fire left dozens including women dead and burnt beyond recognition with many other vehicles and tricycles burnt to ashes at the tapping point.
EnergyDay gathered that the affected pipeline was on the Trans Niger Delta Pipeline (TNP) that passed through the Rumuekpe community.
Garuba Yabuku, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) spokesman for Emohua, in Rivers State, said the incident was reported around at the wee hours of Friday.
Rivers state police said the blast in Rumurkpe community, Emuoha district, was caused by thieves and vandals.
Eyewitnesses said that the explosion happened at about 2 a.m, the wee hours of Friday, March 3, 2023.
Some of the deceased persons were said to be illegally scooping crude from pipelines in the area before the explosion occurred.
The Youths and Environmental AdvocCenter (YEAC), an Non Governmental Organisation(NGO) in a statement confirming the incident also disclosed that some of the victims at the exact tapping point in the ‘pit’ got killed while others who had loaded the crude and waiting to load including women were killed by the explosion.
The YEAC claimed that the disaster occurred due to illegal oil refining and thefts.