Tanker explosion kills two, razes 35 vehicles on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway



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Tanker explosion kills two, razes 35 vehicles on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway

By Precious Igbonwelundu and Ernest Nwokolo, Abeokuta



Two persons died while 35 vehicles were burnt when a tanker laden with diesel fell and burst into flame on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway on Saturday.

The accident, which occurred on Kara Bridge in Ifo Local Government Area, Ogun State, between 1 am and 2 am, also left multiple vehicle accidents in its wake.



The driver of the tanker and his motor boy were consumed by the ensuing fire while one other person escaped with severe burns.

It was gathered the tanker burst into flame after its break failed and it rammed into a barricade before tumbling on the long bridge.

Commercial buses parked by a gas station, two trucks and new cars displayed for sale were among the vehicles burnt.

Operatives of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Ogun State Traffic Compliance and Enforcement Corps (TRACE), Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and the Police were seen yesterday rescuing victims, clearing the obstruction caused by the accident and directing traffics.

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The Public Relations Officer of TRACE, Babatunde Akinbiyi, who attributed the accident to loss of control probably due to over speeding or drowsiness on the part of the truck driver, said the injured victim was rescued and taken to Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital (OOUTH), Sagamu, along with the dead.

He said: “The accident occurred around 2 am in the wee hours of Saturday.

“We learnt the tanker was loaded with diesel but we couldn’t confirm what led to its falling on its side. Maybe the driver was sleeping or over-speeding before he lost control.

“However, the driver and the motor boy died in the ensuing inferno that engulfed the scene with about 35 vehicles, including those on display for sales, were burnt.

“One injured victim is presently confirmed and he has been taken to Olabisi Onabanjo Teaching Hospital (OOUTH) along with the dead.”

Also confirming the Kara Bridge explosion, the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) said it responded to the incident around 1:05am.

The Director-General of LASEMA, Dr. Femi Oke-Osanyintolu, said emergency responders comprising Lagos Fire Service and LASEMA officials were attacked by a group of “Fulani boys brandishing dangerous weapons,” adding that the rescuers were forced to seek extra police cover from the Isheri Police Station.

He said: “The operation commenced with police protection until the group of assailants grew larger and caused significant damage to vehicles and threats to the lives of our personnel.

“The team has been forced to suspend the recovery operation for safety reasons.

“It is of note that this attack is part of a very worrisome trend of first responders being attacked in the course of their duties.

“Lagosians are urged to refrain from endangering the lives of emergency responders and to allow them carry out their life saving duties.”

Oke-Osanyintolu said rescuers later returned to the scene with security reinforcements, adding that the fire was extinguished while the wreckage of the tanker was evacuated from the road.

He confirmed the death of the driver and his motor boy in the incident, adding that 10 other persons who sustained injuries were treated on the spot.

Oke-Osanyintolu said the 23 vehicles affected included the 45,000 litre capacity tanker, a luxurious passenger bus, two articulated vehicles and 19 cars.

Tanker explosion kills two, razes 35 vehicles on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway

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