More than 20 people were burnt to death this morning in their vehicles aroundÂ Alakija area of Mile 2, Lagos when an oil tanker fell and spewed its content on theÂ ever-busy Lagos-Badagry expressway.
This tragedy is coming on the heels of another tragic accident which occurredÂ yesterday along the Lagos-Ibadan expressway (near M.K.O. Abiola Gardens) when moreÂ than 10 people were burnt to death when the inter state commutter bus they wereÂ travelling in lost control and crashed against the railings.
Todayâ€™s tragic incident occurred around 6.15 a.m. when the tanker lost control andÂ fell down, spilling its contents on the road.
Four vehicles, including two commuter buses carrying more than 24 commuters and twoÂ private cars, were burnt. No fewer than than 20 people lost their lives while othersÂ suffered serious injuries. Others who attempted to escape fell into a canal andÂ died.
P.M.NEWS gathered at the scene of the accident that when the tanker fell and spewedÂ its content on the road, fire did not result immediately, but fire started after theÂ petrol content got in touch with a burning refuse dump nearby.
The incident led to a stampede and people were seen running away from the spot toÂ escape being caught in the fire. The incident caused traffic gridlock along the MileÂ 2 and Iba Roads for more the four hours.
It took the intervention of firemen from FESTAC fire station to put the infernoÂ under control.
Narrating the incident, the Area Commander of LASTMA, Mr. Taiwo Abayomi, toldÂ P.M.NEWS that when he and his men got to the scene, many lives had been lost andÂ several people injured.
He added that it took the combined effort of the police, LASTMA, civil defence corpsÂ and FRSC to put the situation under control.
Meanwhile, relations of victims burnt in a commercial bus accident along theÂ Lagos-Ibadan expressway this morning besieged the Lagos State University TeachingÂ Hospital (LASUTH) to identify their loved ones. The relations were seen millingÂ around the emergency ward and the mortuary to see the victims.
Some of the badly injured passengers were also seen at the emergency ward of theÂ hospital being attended to by doctors and nurses.
P.M.NEWS gathered that at about 7.30 p.m. yesterday, a commuter bus withÂ registration number, XW 812 APP, was involved in a fatal accident besides MobilÂ Filling Station, near the old toll gate, Lagos-Ibadan expressway, and about ten ofÂ its passengers burnt to death.
The vehicle, it was gathered, was coming from Mile 2 and heading to Ijebu-Ode whenÂ the accident occurred.
Police sources at Isheri police station told P.M.NEWS that the accident occurredÂ when the commuter bus which was speeding somersaulted and caught fire.
As at the time of filing this report, relatives of the victims were seen at LASUTHÂ mortuary, Ikeja, trying to identify the victims.
Some victims of the petrol tanker fire along the Lagos-Badagry expressway were alsoÂ brought to the hospital this morning. There was crying and wailing as relations andÂ sympathisers could not control themselves at the gory sight.
Two of the victims were burnt beyond recognition and were dumped at the entrance ofÂ the mortuary.
However, a mild drama occurred between the police rescue team and some doctors ofÂ LASUTH. While the doctors were attending to one of the victims in the police vanÂ with registration number SE 497 LSR, some policemen lost their patience and told theÂ doctors to move the victim to the ward, so they can continue with their dailyÂ activities.
But the doctors said there was no more space in the emergency ward, and thatÂ besides, the section where such victim can be admitted is currently undergoingÂ renovations.
â€”Bayo Adetu /Â Â Â Cyriacus Izuekwe/Â Dedeigbo Ayodeji