Three bodies were recovered from the scene of Thursday night’s tanker explosion on Mobolaji Bank Anthony Way Lagos, Southwest Nigeria, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) said Friday morning, June 18.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the explosion was triggered when a Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) tanker hit a blockade while in motion at about 10:32 p.m. on Thursday, June 17, 2021, resulting in the fire that engulfed Ogun State Property Investment Company (OPIC) Plaza beside Sheraton Hotel, which houses different commercial outfits, including a Chinese Restaurant.
Ibrahim Farinloye, acting Zonal Coordinator, Southwest Zonal Office, NEMA, said the fire was extinguished around 12:30 a.m. after concerted efforts of five firefighting trucks from Lagos State Fire Service and two trucks from Lagos State Emergency Management Agency Response Unit.
Farinloye said initial search and rescue activities revealed that 13 persons sustained various degrees of burns—four females and nine males— with three bodies recovered and still counting.
“We have so far recovered three bodies from the incident. The bodies were recovered from the generator house of OPIC Plaza and the restaurant. Search and rescue is still ongoing from the collapsed buildings,” he said.
He explained that the victims were given first aid at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), and four of them with severe injuries transferred to the Trauma and Burns Centre at Gbagada General Hospital, Lagos.
According to him, preliminary assessment on vehicles damaged indicated that about 25 vehicles were destroyed.
“Comprehensive post-disaster assessment on the extent of general damages would be done later today,” Farinloye said.
Babajide Jide Sanwo-Olu, Governor of Lagos State was yet to comment on the incident as of press time.
Petrol tanker and pipeline blasts are common in Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital. In March 2020, a gas pipeline inferno claimed at least 23 lives with more than 100 houses and a girl’s boarding school razed down at Abule-Ado, Lagos.
A BBC investigation showed the incident could have been averted if the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) which owns the pipeline had managed its facility well.
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