BEVERLY HILLS, September 24, (THEWILL) – A gas tanker exploded on Thursday in Ifako-Ijaiye area of Lagos with at least 30 persons sustaining injuries.
Director-General of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMMA), Dr Olufemi Damilola Oke-Osanyintolu, confirmed the incident. The LASEMA boss said efforts are being made by his men to put out the resulting fire from the explosion with support from the Lagos State Fire Service, the Nigeria Police Force, and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.
On Twitter, the emergency agency asked Lagosians to remain calm. According to LASEMA investigations, an unknown truck conveying gasoline had a lone accident and exploded.
“The impact of the explosion led to fire on adjoining buildings and several vehicles burnt,” the agency said. “Several persons were injured and have been taken to the nearest hospital for treatment”
In a statement by the South West Coordinator, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Ibrahim Farinloye said two fire engines were on ground to contain its spread to nearby buildings, with others on the way. He disclosed that 30 persons sustained varying degrees of injuries.
Giving a breakdown of the figure, Farinloye said “15 persons were admitted at the Iju Water Works Clinic, two persons referred to General hospital, three persons are on critical observation and 10 persons are being treated presently. Among the affected buildings, according to Farinloye, was an event centre.
Speaking on Thursday at the site of the explosion, LASEMA’s Director of Operations, Engr Olatunde Akinsanya said 16 persons have been confirmed to be critically injured and taken to the Iju Water Works clinic.
THEWILLgathered that the tanker was supposed to off load its content at a gas station, but the station’s owner reportedly refused to allow him because a seal had been broken, indicating that the content had been tampered with. Enraged by the refusal of the station manager to off load the content in his tanker, the driver moved out of the premises.
A few meters away from the gas station, the front tire of the tanker burst and the gearbox struck the ground causing a spark which led to an explosion when it came in contact with gas that was leaking from the tanker. The vehicle ended in a ditch, where a second explosion erupted.
Eyewitnesses said the second explosion sent the tanker flying and destroying buildings in its path, including a church. The impact of the explosion spread about 300 radii from the scene of the incident, the LASEMA official said.