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Two dead and up to 70 injured after tanker explodes near airport in Italy

07 August 2018

A huge explosion on a motorway near Bologna airport in northern Italy has killed two people and left at least 70 injured, some with serious burns, police said. The explosion was caused when a road tanker carrying liquefied petroleum gas crashed into another truck that had come to a halt in the lane in front of it.

The incident site at Borgo Panigale - Image: Vigili del Fuoco
The incident site at Borgo Panigale - Image: Vigili del Fuoco

The tanker hit the other truck and burst into a huge fireball, which caused part of the motorway bridge to collapse and sent the vehicle crashing onto a car dealership below in the suburb of Borgo Panigale. The blaze then spread to several cars at the dealership which also exploded, sending debris flying and smashing windows nearby.

Scores of people had to flee their homes near the blaze as firefighters battled to get the fire under control. Authorities have said the intensity of the heat made it difficult for crews to put out the blaze. Local TV showed a column of thick black smoke rising from the site of the incident.

Bologna airport was not affected, with flights running regularly throughout the incident.

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