A fuel tanker caught fire in Afghanistan on February 13 that spread to around 500 other trucks carrying fossil fuel and burned them down. The razed fleet of trucks could be seen from space and several NASA satellites captured clear images of the incident and also observed some explosions. The Herat province between Afghanistan and Iran was the place of this mishap that resulted in 60 injuries from burns and smoke inhalation.
Two of the several explosions were huge enough to be captured by NASA satellites, one took place at 1:10 p.m. while the other happened half an hour later, at around 1:42 p.m. in the Afghan time zone. It is not yet known as to what was the cause of this incident, but a faulty mechanical part or the working personnel themselves could be the reason. However, the Talibani rebels may have also blown up the tanker.
Iran’s news agency ISNA reported that as per the truck drivers, over 500 trucks carrying fuel and natural gas caught fire. The Herat provincial governor, Wahid Qatali stated that more than 2000 vehicles were protected at the site of the fire. Out of these 2000 vehicles, 1500 were rushed into Iran across the border so they could be kept away from the blasts.
Images from today, Feb 17, of the #Afghan–#Iran border showing the aftermath of a series of fuel tanker explosions that occurred on Feb 13 at the Islam Qala crossing in #Afghanistan's Herat province. 500+ trucks carrying natural gas & fuel were reportedly destroyed in the blasts. pic.twitter.com/dCnIhH9dPG
— Maxar Technologies (@Maxar) February 17, 2021
Wahid Qatali also said that the crossing point was overcrowded when the fire broke out. He said that the crossing point has a capacity of up to 700 oil trucks but there were over 2500 trucks present there.