Children in Sange; photo by The Advocacy Project (Flickr Creative Commons)

Over 230 people have been killed and 110 injured in Sange, a village in the South Kivu province of the Democratic Republic of Congo, when an oil tanker exploded, setting the village on fire.

The blast occurred late Friday evening after the tanker – en route from Tanzania –overturned and began leaking oil. The tanker had been trying to pass a bus on a dirt road in Sange. Villagers gathered around to collect some of the leaking fuel, which is a valuable commodity in the Congo. The fuel had already leaked and spread over a large portion of the village when the tanker ignited, spreading fire and causing death and devastation.

According to an article in the Observer, over a quarter of the victims were children.

From an Al Jazeera English report:

Some people were killed trying to steal the fuel, but most of the dead were people who were indoors watching the [World Cup] match.

–Marcellin Cisamvo, the governor of South Kivu province, DRC

The population of Sange has doubled over the past year to around 40,000 due to refugees from regional conflicts and has a large number of orphans.

Watch the below report from Al Jazeera English for more:

Graham Land