Injured Pinoys in Riyadh now stable - embassy
MANILA, Philippines – The 11 Filipinos injured in a Saudi Arabia truck explosion are now in stable condition, Philippine Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Ezzedin Tago said Friday, November 2.
In an interview aired on ANC, Tago said this information comes from private and public hospitals where the Filipinos have been confined.
The explosion of a gas tanker truck on Thursday, November 1, killed one Filipino and 21 others. The blast injured around 111 people.
On Thursday evening, Tago confirmed the Filipino's death on ANC. The ambassador, however, refused to identify the lone Filipino fatality because some of the person's relatives may not have been informed about the death yet.
Tago said the dead Filipino was with his brother-in-law when the incident happened. "They worked as truck drivers, so it was in the vicinity of the highway. The accident all happened on a highway in the outlying district in Riyadh capital," he explained.
In another interview, Tago said the embassy is now coordinating with the Filipino's employers to bring his body back to the Philippines. He said it may take 4 to 5 weeks to repatriate the remains.
The Saudi government said the incident is not related to terrorism, according to Tago.
The truck veered into a bridge pylon at a junction on Khurays Road in Riyadh Thursday morning in Saudi, causing a gas leak that spread out and then burst into flames, destroying nearby cars and a building, officials told AFP.
A bus that had been gutted by the fire stood idle on the flyover, with witnesses saying that the vehicle had been transporting workers. Another truck fell off the bridge due to the impact of the explosion, the witnesses said.
Civil defense spokesman in Riyadh, Mohammed al-Hammadi, said the explosion took place after gas leaked from the tank of the lorry, according to SPA state news agency.
"The explosion and fire happened after leaked gas filled the area. Huge damage happened, in addition to many traffic collisions," he said. – Rappler.com, with reports from Agence France-Presse
For a related story, read: 1 Pinoy killed, 11 hurt in Riyadh blast - DFA