Driver Dies in Almaty Gas Truck Explosion (Video)

June 27, 2013 — 23:00
A fire fighter tackles the blaze in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Sergey Khodanov

One person died and about 40 were evacuated from their homes after a fuel truck exploded Thursday in the Kazakh city of Almaty.

Burning oil flowed into the drainage system on Ulitsa Seifullina and an 8-story building was set alight after the truck driver, who died in the explosion, lost control of the vehicle, Interfax reported.

Passers-by had tried to pull the driver from the vehicle before it exploded, but without success, Tengrinews reported. Witnesses did not rule out the possibility of further casualties being reported.

It is not immediately clear what caused the crash, but some reports say that the truck overturned after crashing into a pole. Others reports blamed brake failure and a collision with an SUV.

The footage shows local fire crews trying to extinguish the inferno. Fourteen fire engines and 350 emergency services workers were mobilized in the operation.

The blaze was contained at 11:08 a.m. local time, but not before extensive damage was done to surrounding homes and vehicles.

Deputy of the city's administration Yury Ilyin told Interfax that 20 flats and 8 cars had been completely destroyed by the fire.

Ilyin added that compensation would be paid to the owners of property and vehicles that had been damaged in the fire.

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