Tankers blast in series on Afghan-Iran border, Nasa captures it.

Huge blast on Afghanistan-Iran border, the cause yet to be known (Source:www.enmehrnews.com)

On February 13, at around 1:10 pm Afghan time (8:40 am GMT) a huge blast erupted, following a second blast eruption, happening around half-hour later at 1:42 pm local (9:12 am GMT). The explosions were so much intense that they got spotted from space by Nasa satellites.

A fuel tanker had exploded at Islam Qala crossing in Afghanistan’s western Herat province on the Iranian border. The massive fire leads to the blasting of 500 trucks carrying natural gas and fuel in a chain reaction, engulfing the whole region in a fire that persisted even after nightfall. At least 60 people got injured. The Afghan rescue forces summoned for help from Iran and soon troops of the Iranian army, Iranian fire-fighters, and Iranian border guards rushed to Herat to extinguish the blaze, later on Saturday itself.

“For the time being, we can’t even talk about the casualties,” Qatali told to The Associated Press. 7 people who had succumbed to injuries had been taken to the nearest hospital in Herat. Iranian state television reported that fire also spread to the Dogharoon customs facilities on the Iranian side of the border. Consequently, Afghanistan had to shut down the electric supply from Iran, leaving Herat in total darkness.

Younus Qazizada, the head of the Herat Chamber of Commerce and Industries, told Reuters the blaze had caused millions of dollars in damage. “Preliminary investigations show that more than $50m of damage has been caused by the fire so far,” he said.

The exact cause of the explosion is still unknown. The Islam Qala border crossing is a very important transit route between Afghanistan and Iran. It stretches around 120 km (75 miles) west of the city of Herat. The road between Herat and Islam Qala is feared by the Afghan commuters as the Taliban insurgents freely travel there.

The commuters fear being attacked by criminal gangs residing there. Checkpoints are set up by the Afghan security services that assist ambulances and emergency vehicles traveling this highway. Satellite photos provided evidence that dozens of tankers were parked across the border crossing before the explosion took place.

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