ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – President of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) Masoud Barzani on Wednesday expressed his condolences to the families of victims who died the night before in an explosion caused by a collision between a fuel tanker and a passenger bus in Iranian Kurdistan (Rojhilat).
State media reported early Wednesday that 13 people had died in the incident when the tanker, experiencing brake failure, crashed into the bus in Sanandaj (Sine), a city in Rojhilat, some 400 kilometers (250 miles) west of Tehran.
“This is a tragic incident. This loss of lives among the people of Sine has saddened us all, and I direct my sympathies and condolences to the families of the victims of the incident and the good people of Sine,” Barzani said in a statement posted on his website.
The tanker, carrying 18,000 liters of fuel, exploded immediately upon collision, causing additional damage to three other nearby vehicles, according to a local fire department.
It has been suggested that the tanker’s fuel was oil from the Iraqi city of Kirkuk, but authorities have yet to confirm this.
Iran’s rate of traffic automobile accidents is 20 times higher than the world’s average, due to the country’s poor road condition and lax traffic enforcement, the United Nations (UN) has reported.
“I hope for a swift recovery for the injured,” said Barzani.
Editing by John J. Catherine