One person was injured in an explosion that occurred inside an oil tanker that was anchored near the African Marine shipyard in Liwatoni, Likoni.
Confirming the incident, the head of police at the Central station, Mr Maxwel Agoro, said that the initial investigation shows that the explosion was caused by the accumulation of gas in the fuel tanks on the ship. Mr Agoro said the ship named East Wind II transported oil to Zanzibar before returning to anchor in Mombasa. According to the police chief, the injured person was rushed to Pandya Hospital.
“It’s gas filled in the fuel room and it wanted to come out. It’s like when you have a vessel with oil in it, and after you pour the oil and cover the vessel, even if it is empty, it will swell. In the process of finding a way out, the gas did not find a way and then the explosion occurred,” said Mr Agoro.
The big explosion that shook buildings in the city up to two kilometers away, caused a fire that destroyed parts of the ship. However, the quick actions of the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) which used boats and fire engines that arrived quickly, prevented further damage.
People who were at the scene were quickly removed by emergency forces. Joint teams of detectives from the Criminal Investigation Department, the Anti-Terrorism Police, and the Bomb Squad visited the scene to find out what happened. Those who witnessed the incident said that the explosion was accompanied by a cloud of fire and black smoke.
A security guard in one of the buildings near the station said that metal was also thrown into the air from the ship while citizens ran to find safety.