Ghana's head of state, Lt. Jerry Rawlings, said on Accra radio yesterday that troops loyal to his military government had crushed a coup attempt by disgruntled soldiers.

It was the fourth attempt in a year to overthrow the West African leader and his ruling Provisional Defense Council.

Rawlings, in a broadcast monitored in London, said loyal troops were in control of all military units and strategic points, United Press International reported. All of Ghana's borders were closed until further notice, he announced.

Rawlings also said several dissident soldiers were killed and many arrested.

Explosions and heavy fighting were reported at midday near the Army headquarters, the airport and Broadcasting House, the headquarters for Accra radio, diplomatic sources in London said.

"We want to inform you we have taken over the Broadcasting House although we just found a few dissidents who wanted to take this country back," said an unidentified captain loyal to Rawlings in a broadcast by Accra radio.

Shouting could be heard in the background throughout the broadcast, according to British Broadcasting Corp. monitors in London.

In Washington, a State Department spokesman said the department was aware of an attempted coup in Ghana. He said the attempt failed and Rawlings remained in power.

"Everything is under control," the radio announced. "Everyone should remain calm. I want to inform all those dissidents to report to the nearest police station or military installation now for their own safety. I am telling all regular forces that anyone seen entering military barracks in civil dress should be shot on sight."