Otedola Bridge Inferno.
Lagos govt commiserates with families of victims.
Says Incident Most Unfortunate, Regrettable.
Ten people were feared dead, when a petrol-laden tanker burst into flames on Thursday evening at Otedola Bridge, inward Ojodu Berger area of Lagos State.
The incident, which occurred at about 5pm, left scores of vehicles burnt while some lives were lost.
Eyewitnesses expressed worry the death toll could be worse.
60 cars were destroyed in the inferno.
Police source revealed that the tanker, which had been heading towards the Ibadan Expressway, fell on the bridge, with the ensuing fiery spill engulfing cars and people on its path.
The incident brought traffic to a standstill in the area and other parts of the city.
In a swift reaction, Lagos State police spokesman, Chike Oti, said: “It is a black Thursday. I am personally not in a happy mood. The police and other agencies are on ground. So far, we have counted 67 vehicles burnt, while 10 persons were confirmed dead. The Commissioner of Police, Lagos command, is using this opportunity to advise tanker drivers to make safety equipment available in their operations.”
General Manager of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), Tiamiyu Adeshina, however, said nine persons died, while four others were rushed to the hospital by the Lagos State Ambulance Service (LASAMBUS).
“About 60 cars were burnt to ashes. But we can be thankful that a lot of people had the presence of mind to abandon their cars on the spot and scamper to safety. We have no idea what made the tanker lose control yet. Investigations would take place as soon as we finish recovery. As at this evening, the fire has been brought under control and we are trying to salvage as much as we can,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Lagos State Government has commiserated with families of victims who lost their lives and property in the fatal incident.
The Government, in a statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Kehinde Bamigbetan, described the incident as a sad development, saying that the incident was most unfortunate and regrettable.
“On behalf of the Lagos State Government, we extend our deepest commiseration to the families of persons who lost their lives as well as properties to the incident. Our thoughts and prayers are with them in this time of pain and grief.
“As a government, we would not relent in putting measures in place to ensure safety of lives and property of all residents,” Bamigbetan said.
The Commissioner said that Governor Ambode has directed all relevant agencies to move into the area to normalise the apprehension that had taken over the area and to also ensure that those in need are adequately taken care of.
The governor assured that clearing of the highway of damaged vehicles to establish normal traffic flow would continue throughout the night until the objective is achieved.
He called for the co-operation of all citizens with the officials of the agencies to restore the situation to normalcy.
He also urged motorists to continue to adhere to the safety standard and the State Traffic Laws so as to prevent a re-occurrence of such incidents.