Highly explosive facilities housing long range weapons of Ghana’s military were not affected by the fire and explosion that occurred at an armoury at the Michel Camp Barracks near Tema in the wee hours of Wednesday.
Residents around the camp were forced to flee the zone few minutes after midnight as loud blasts were heard in the area amidst flying of metal objects from the explosion zone to their homes.
The explosions were said to have been triggered by a fire outbreak at the Base Ammunition Depot (BAD) where large consignment of explosives had been stored.
A freelance defence reporter, Moses Dawutey, told Accra-based 3FM 92.7 Wednesday morning that the area where the explosion occurred happened “contain all the weapons of the country”.
According to him, both “small and big arms were located there” for which reason the military deployed all efforts to the area to contain the fire. It took the combine military and fire service an hour and a half to bring the situation under control, he said.
The level of destruction caused by the fire-cum-explosion is unclear as the military has since Wednesday morning cordoned off the entire area, ostensibly to begin investigations into the incident that caused fear and panic among residents who were asleep at the time.
Speaking to 3news.com Wednesday, Director of Public Relations at the Ghana Armed Forces, Colonel Aggrey Quarshie confirmed the incident at the Base Ammunition Depot but said the military personnel managed to contain it.
He said no casualties have so far been reported.
“It’s not clear yet what had triggered the fire that engulfed the sensitive installation,” he said, noting the fire was detected in the laboratory and small arms zone of the depot.
He said efforts were concentrated in halting the spread of the fire “to the areas housing the Highly Explosive zone where long range ordinances are located”
“At about midnight of Wednesday, residents of communities bordering the BAD evacuated to safer grounds towards Afienya to the north, Tema in the south, C 25 towards Aflao and Gbetsile to the west heads to Appolonia,” he noted.