The truck driver who was delivering explosives when they exploded on January 20 at Appiatse near Bogoso in the Western Region has finally spoken.
Alfred Pappoe, the sad driver who is still nursing his wounds, has been laid off. He said that in February, his manager at Arthanns Company issued him a termination letter with a one-month salary without taking into account the stress he had experienced as a result of the accident.
Mr. Pappoe, who was paid GHC1,100 per month, said his manager informed him that his contract with MAXAM Company had been lost as a result of the accident, necessitating his dismissal.
“At the end of February, my boss told me that MAXAM Company had terminated the contract with him, as such, he also had to terminate his contract with me,” Mr. Pappoe said.
Given the sacrifice he made to rescue the people from the impact of the explosion if it had occurred in the midst of town, he voiced disgust that his boss could do that to him.
A DAF van with the registration number WR 2252-18 delivering explosives from Tarkwa to Chirano Gold Mines and a motorcycle were involved in the tragic accident at Appiate.
According to the police, a motorbike rider traveling in the opposite way collided with the vehicle.
After feeling danger, Alfred Pappoe drove out of town to save the citizens, according to him.
“When I was almost getting to Appiate, the town was in a bend and at that time, the Police escort had already negotiated the bend. I later saw a motorcycle coming from the opposite direction and immediately a Urvan bus was just close to him and trying to overtake a ‘Pragya’.”
“The motor rider was still following the Urvan and just when the Urvan driver shifted to another lane, the motor rider lost control and two people fell from the motor. The motorcycle was heading towards my direction as he was very close,” he said.
Mr Pappoe claimed on Adom FM’s Kasiebo is Tasty that it would have been so easy for him to escape the motor at that moment by turning to his left, but that would have meant going into the two people who had fallen off the motor, so he decided against it.
But, before he could do so, he noticed that the fuel tank on the motor had opened and was seeping underneath his truck. It caused a fire, which subsequently spread to the truck.
Mr. Pappoe said he realized there was nothing he could do when the fire started and chose to flee the town before it detonated.
“When I realised there was nothing I could do, I decided to drive quickly from the town because I knew it was going to explode. That was when some of the residents started drawing closer to the truck and started shouting that the truck was on fire.”
“I knew what I was doing and so I didn’t even pay attention to the residents. I wanted to just move out of the town and drive past a fuel station and get a safer place and leave the truck there to explode even though I was feeling the heat in the truck,” he added.
The residents, he added, were still following the vehicle and refused to stop despite his repeated warnings because they wanted to photograph and tape the situation.