A tank with thousands of liters of diesel exploded, leaving behind dense black smoke south of Umán.
No injuries were reported.
The land where thousands of liters of diesel were stored is one step away from dozens of truck drivers resumed to be selling fuel to huachicoleros — gas thieves — El Universal reported.
Neighbors said they were going about their daily business when a loud explosion was heard.
In the area, state police, firefighters, and paramedics responded.
The accident occurred in the satellite community of Tebec, which is under Umán’s jurisdiction. This would be the second time that a huachicol warehouse in the area. Last year, more than 36,000 liters of fuel were found mysteriously stockpiled.
Fuel thefts can be deadly. Two of seven alleged fuel thieves were killed in July 2018 when they accidentally blew up a pipeline they were attempting to tap near the Mérida-Progreso highway, according to Yucatán Magazine.
The next year, 21 were killed and nearly 80 seriously injured in a tragic fireball when residents in Hidalgo, in central Mexico, had lined up for fuel gushing from a ruptured pipeline.
Police report the site to have contaminated 36 thousand liters of diesel obtained by people illegally taping into Pemex ducts or steeling the raw material from trucks.
In recent years the practice appears to have become even more widespread, despite President Lopez Obrador’s claims to be cracking down on the issue.
The thieves, who target Pemex ducts or have an in with corrupt Pemex employees or officials, then sell the fuel on the black market, or to other wholesalers. Fuel thieves are rarely prosecuted.
The practice of diesel and gasoline theft is a cause of great anger to Mexicans, especially as the average cost of a liter of fuel has now surpassed 22 pesos.