A gas tanker has exploded on a motorway in a suburb of Mexico City, killing at least 19 people and injuring 36, officials say.
May 7, 2013
Television images showed damaged buildings and cars in the area of Ecatepec on Tuesday morning.The explosion happened at about 05:00 local time (10:00 GMT) on the highway between Mexico City and Pachuca. The driver of the truck is under arrest in hospital, where he was being treated, officials say.
A giant plume of smoke rose over the area, about 14km (8.6 miles) north-east of the Mexican capital.
The gas tanker was thought to be traveling north when it crashed into another vehicle, BBC Mexico correspondent Will Grant reports. At least 30 homes and 20 cars were damaged, according to local media.
Salvador Neme Sastre, secretary for citizen security in Mexico State, confirmed the casualty figures on Twitter but officials fear the number of dead could still rise. Some of the casualties were asleep in homes in poor areas along the edge of the road.
Television images showed firefighters and rescue workers sifting through the wreckage, but there was no initial explanation as to what caused the crash.
The Mexican government announced measures in 2012 to lower the maximum allowed weight of freight vehicles after a series of crashes involving overloaded trucks.
However such accidents are still very common, as capitalist oligarchs refuse to enact measures to obey the law and are beholden only to profit, not the public interest.
Mexican media said the area resembled a “war zone,” with nearby homes and cars completely burned out. Dozens of ambulances were at the scene.