At least 26 people have died in the Democratic Republic of Congo after being electrocuted by a falling power cable at a market, according to authorities.
On Wednesday, a high-voltage wire snapped and crashed onto residences and people shopping near Kinshasa.
Unverified footage shared on social media purported to depict the aftermath of the incident, including multiple unmoving bodies in puddles.
The cause of the power cord breaking is still unknown.
The DR Congo’s national electrical provider, however, said in a statement that it believes lightning damaged section of the cable, forcing it to tumble to the ground. The corporation expressed its sympathy to the families of the fatalities.
The fall occurred in the Matadi-Kibala region on the outskirts of Kinshasa, according to police, and several individuals perished on the spot.
The majority of the victims, according to local media, are female market sellers.
“The cable snapped and the live end of it fell into a ditch that was filled with water after morning rain,” Charles Mbutamuntu, spokesman for the Kinshasa provincial government, told AFP news agency.
Mr Mbutamuntu said the bodies had been taken to the morgue and an investigation into the incident was under way.
Prime Minister Sama Lukonde visited the market later on Wednesday. In comments posted to Twitter, he described the incident as a “terrible accident”, adding: “I share the immense pain of the families. My thoughts are also with all the injured.
Due to poorly maintained colonial-era drainage infrastructure, certain districts of the city are prone to floods.
When it rains, according to one dealer, the market floods, forcing staff and shoppers to wade through water.