It is a sad day for government workers in Lagos State on Thursday as a moving train rammed into a state bus conveying civil servants to work.
The unfortunate crash occurred at the PWD bus stop in the Ikeja area of the state on Thursday morning. Already, six persons have been confirmed dead by emergency responders, and over 82 persons injured and rushed to the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH) in Ikeja.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who visited the hospital, said two persons died at the scene of the accident and four at the hospital.
He said 85 passengers were involved in all, 42 with moderate injuries, 29 with serious injuries while eight have mild injuries.
The sights from the scene are gory as passersby watch in horror even as dead and injured victims were extricated from the bus which was hit right on the rail tracks.
The Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) spokesman, Adebayo Taofiq said though the bus involved in the crash is the same as the regular BRT buses in the state, the bus was a staff bus of the Lagos State Government.
Also, a spokesman for the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), Nosa Okunbor said over 82 others injured and evacuated to LASUTH.
“The State Government staff bus was trying to cross the PWD/Sogunle rail crossing while the train coming into Lagos from Abeokuta trapped the bus on its rail,” he added.
First responders later arrived the scene for rescue operations.
Fatal cases of vehicle-train collision have resulted in casualties over the years. The last one was recorded in December 2022 when a passenger train from Kaduna to Abuja crushed a middle-aged woman to death on the rail track around the Kubwa area of the nation’s Federal Capital Territory. Stakeholders and safety experts have repeatedly called for preventive measures to stop the recurrence but not much can be said to have been done by the concerned authorities.
Gov Sanwo-Olu Visits Victims At LASUTH
Meanwhile, Governor Sanwo-Olu visited injured victims of the crash at LASUTH.
Governor of Lagos State, Mr @jidesanwoolu’s arrival earlier today at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (@LASUTHikeja) to see the victims of the unfortunate BUS/Train accident … The Bus is a Staff bus of the Lagos State Govt and occupants are mostly Civil Servants. pic.twitter.com/sD60HZuK9L
— Jubril A. Gawat (@Mr_JAGs) March 9, 2023
“I am deeply saddened by the news of the train/bus accident . The vehicle was conveying staff of the Lagos state government, our staff who serve the state in different capacities,” the governor said in a statement.
“Let’s say a prayer for the families and a prayer of mercy and protection for our state. My thoughts are with the victims and their families during this difficult time.”
I am deeply saddened by the news of the train/bus accident . The vehicle was conveying staff of the Lagos state government, our staff who serve the state in different capacities.
Let’s say a prayer for the families and a prayer of mercy and protection for our state.
— Babajide Sanwo-Olu (@jidesanwoolu) March 9, 2023
FG Begins Probe
The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika has since directed the Nigerian Safety Investigation Bureau experts to commence immediate investigation into the accident.
In a statement by his Special Assistant on Public Affairs, James Odaudu, the minister described the accident as unfortunate, and assured the public of the capacity of the Nigeria Safety Investigation Bureau (NSIB) to unravel the immediate and remote causes of the accident and proffer ways of preventing such in the future.
He solicited the cooperation of members of the public as investigation by the NSIB team commences.
He commiserated with the government and people of Lagos, especially those who have lost their loved ones, on the sad event, and prayed for the quick recovery of those injured in the accident.
See photos from the scene: