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Two killed in tanker explosion - Good Samaritans injured

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Good samaritans Injured trying to help 



Two killed in gas truck explosion in Bocas del Toro

Two people died and four others injured in the explosion of a tanker truck carrying fuel Saturday in Chiriqui Grande, Bocas del Toro.

Firefighters from Bocas del Toro responded to the incident Saturday night.

The injured were people passing by the incident who tried to help those inside the truck.

The injured have been taken to the David Hospital in Chiriquí where they are being treated for burns.

The names of those injured are: Amílcar Espinoza, 53, the director of the prison in Changuinola, Dr. Larkin Zapata, Diogenes Bellido, 38, a nursing technician, and José Díaz, 53. The names of those killed in the accident have not been released.



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A DENTIST, who suffered severe burns while trying to rescue two men from a blazing gasoline truck on Saturday  November 19, has died  from his injuries


Larkin Zapata  and three  other men were struggling to save a father and son who died in the crash and subsequent explosion of a the truck in Bocas del Toro,

Zapata died at about 10:45 a.m.  on Thursday  Nov 24 at the David Regional Hospital.

He could not be transferred to Panama City because of heavy rains in recent days. President Juan Carlos Varela lamented Zapata’s death and called him a hero. The dentist was one of four people who tried to rescue José Castillo, the 68 year old driver of the truck, and his  son 19, of the same name, who was a passenger. Amilcar Espinoza, director of the Changuinola Prison, Diogenes Bellido, a nursing technician, and José Díaz, a driver, also tried to rescue the people inside the truck.

All were severely burned when the truck exploded.


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It appears to be a flag of a community service organization in the background of this picture, so it is reasonable to presume that Dr. Zapata made service to others part of his life. So sad to hear this outcome. Giving one's life in an effort to save someone else, I agree -- a HERO!

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