A bullet tanker carrying liquid petroleum gas (LPG) from Mangalore caught fire after it overturned on the National Highway at Kallyasseri in Kannur in the early hours of Tuesday.

The incident occurred at around 4 a.m. when the tanker on its way to Kozhikode overturned after hitting a vehicle coming from the opposite side. The tanker, carrying 18 tonnes of LPG belonging to the Indian Oil Corporation, lost control after it was hit by the vehicle. On seeing the leakage of gas from the tanker the driver and the cleaner immediately fled from the cabin and informed nearby residents to leave in view of the possibility of an explosion.

Around 20 Fire tenders from Kannur and nearby areas reached the spot to extinguish fire. District Collector M.G. Rajamanickam and Superintendent of Police A. Srinivas reached the spot and ordered the evacuation of the residents living in the vicinity, as the fire was still billowing from the tanker. The authorities said that IOC experts from Mangalore and Kozhikode were on their way to Kallyassery. The fire units are not able to go near the tanker as the gas continued to leak from the tanker.

As the LPG tanker tragedy at Chala in Kannur on August 27, 2012, which claimed the lives of 20 people, was fresh in memory, the authorities and the residents were taking extra precaution to avert similar situation. The fire tenders, which reached the spot around 7 a.m. started spraying water on the tanker from a safe distance.

The road traffic on the National Highway was diverted following the incident.

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