The explosion at a vandalised pipeline shook a northern area of Lagos, Nigeria's commercial capital, early in the morning.
Recovery workers have found more than 200 bodies - many of them completely charred.
The Red Cross says many of those killed were scooping fuel from a pipeline that had been punctured earlier by thieves.
Buildings and cars were damaged in the blast in the Abule Egba district.
Recovery efforts have been hampered by the intense heat. Officials fear they will find more bodies once all the flames are put out.