Three persons have been confirmed dead on Wednesday, after an accident that occurred on the Lagos-Ibadan express way.
The ghastly accident occurred when a tanker collided with another truck, causing a fire explosion, on a major bridge along Lagos-Ibadan expressway, in the early hours of Wednesday.
The roads reached a gridlock following the incident, although traffic officials have been working to ease the road tension so far, and joint evacuation efforts were being carried out by men of the National Emergency Management Agency, (NEMA), Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), NSCDC, fire service and the police.
FRSC Marshall, Boboye Oyeyemi, explaining the situation that led up to the recent road congestion, said:
“The Lagos Ibadan expressway has the highest traffic density in the country, of about 25,000 vehicles per hour.”
Hence, the need for the ongoing road construction, aimed at expanding the roads from two-way lanes to three.
He explained that “when this kind of construction is on-going, there is bound to be such chaotic situation, however, even before the construction started, there have been series of traffic alerts by the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)”.
As early as 3:30am on Wednesday, traffic already started building-up, in what many thought was the usual traffic, which started last week due to the re-construction of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.
Unknown to them, the ghastly accident had just occurred, involving goods-laden truck, diesel tanker and some vehicles.
According to passers-by, vehicles heading toward the axis were diverted to the inward-Lagos lane as officers of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) cordoned off the outward Lagos-lane.
A bus driver giving account of the event said he got caught up in the traffic which he thought was due to the u-turn before Secretariat bus-stop, but on getting to the u-turn, he saw FRSC officials diverting vehicles to the inward-Lagos lane.
Vehicles that were already ahead on the cordoned off lane started making a u-turn to join the inward-Lagos lane on sighting the diesel tanker accident.
Public vehicles that are Mowe-Ibafo bound, began dropping off passengers at Berger bus-stop, refusing to go further because of the situation, with passengers left with no other choice than to trek from Berger to their various destinations.
Another eye-witness who requested anonymity, explained that the failure of the fuel tanker’s brake system caused it to lose control and collide with the truck.
Thanks to the prompt alertness of the FRSC, LASEMA, Lagos State Firefighters, and Police who were able to bring the situation under control with rescue operations still ongoing.
FRSC Officials however warned motorists that were now driving against traffic, to be careful.
A spokesman for the FRSC told Channels Television that immediately the event occurred, “Our men, LASEMA and many other emergency response organizations, rushed to the scene of the accident.
He believes that the accident was as a result of indiscipline of drivers.
“What you have seen is a classical example of indiscipline that has been happening on this road, since the commencement of the rehabilitation of the roads.
“As you can see, there are about four vehicles involved, which means two-lane carriage way had been converted to four-lanes and as a result, they struck themselves and there was a crash and also an explosion of fire.
He however, gave the assurance that the debris would be cleared while the traffic would ease as soon as possible.