Gas canister blast during carnival kills 8 in Bolivia

Feb. 12 (UPI) — A street vendor’s gas canister exploded during a carnival celebration in Bolvia on Saturday, killing eight people, including four children, officials said.

At least 40 others were injured in the blast.

The incident occurred in the city of Oruru, located about 140 miles south of La Paz, the Bolivian capital.

Romel César Raña, deputy commander of the Oruro police, said a roadside food stall operator had a poorly-installed gas tank that exploded in an area where thousands of dancers were participating in the city’s popular Carnival’s celebrations, Xinhua News reported.

“The hot oil caused the deterioration of the pipe, causing a gas leak which sparked the explosion,” César Raña said.

Bolivian President Evo Morales said in a tweet that he was “dismayed at the news of the deaths caused by the explosion.”

Oruru’s annual carnival celebration dates back to pre-Columbian times and was put on UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2008.

People from all over the world come to see the more than 28,000 dancers and 10,000 musicians take part in the festivities each year.