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Explosion at Samoa fuel tank kills one

A fire at the main fuel depot in Samoa's capital, Apia, on Monday has killed one person and injured one other.

The fire broke out at the main wharf, and saw government offices and businesses evacuated from nearby for most of the day.

The tank's owner, Petroleum Products Supplies (PPS), said in a statement that at no time was there any risk to the public.

RNZ International's correspondent in Apia, Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia, said several investigations had been launched into the incident, but it was believed to have started while maintenance work was being carried out.

In its statement, PPS said there was an explosion at one its tanks on the wharf at Matautu-tai at about 10 am. One person died at the scene while another was treated and discharged from hospital.

As a precaution, it said, the main fuel terminal at Sogi was shut down immediately, but the terminal has since reopened and normal operations have resumed.

The fire was extinguished when a truck with special foam came from Faleolo International Airport.

PPS said the prime minister, Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi, has requested assistance from the Australian, New Zealand, and United States governments to help with efforts to ensure such an incident doesn't happen again.

Radio New Zealand International
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