The Ibassa Ijegun-Egba Youth Association in the Ojo Local Government Area of Lagos State has pleaded with the state government to remove tank farms from the community, due to incessant fire incidents at the tank farms.
The association’s reaction came against the backdrop of last Wednesday’s fire that razed an oil tank farm belonging to Stallionaire Oil at Ijegun, Satellite town, Lagos State.
The Lagos Emergency Agency, LESEMA, said that prompt response by the emergency responders prevented the fire from getting out of hand.
However, the Chairman of the association, Mr Taofeeq Odunewu, told newsmen in Lagos that the presence of the tank farms had put residents of the community at ‘perpetual risk’.
He said that the operators of the tank farms had failed to build a central fire station and fire-fighting facility in the event of a fire outbreak, adding, “The oil depots did not carry out environmental impact assessment, EIA, before commencing their operations.
“We have more than 12 tank farms operating in the community, some of which are A.A. RANO, Emadeb Energy, Wosbab, Chipet Nig. Ltd., Star Oil and Gas and Bond Global Energy Ltd.
“Others are Mao Petroleum Company, Stallionaire Nig. Ltd., First Deep Water, Menj Oil and Ocean Pride Oil.All these tank farms did not have a fire-fighting boat in case of fire in their depots.
“This is the third time that fire incident will occur in the oil depots located here. We are appealing to the Lagos State Governor, Akinwumi Ambode to relocate the oil depots from our community because our people are not safe. Government should not wait until an explosion from the tank farms consumes us,” Odunewu added.
Also speaking, the Secretary of the association, Mr. Sefiu Wakili, said that the only road constructed by the state government in the community had been destroyed by heavy-duty trucks owned by the tank farms.
Wakili said that on two occasions, tankers had fallen on the road and almost resulting to fire incidents.
“If not the Lagos Fire Service that came to our rescue, many lives would have been lost in the incidents.’’
Wakili also pleaded with the Lagos State government to dualise the Mumin Adio Badmus road, describing the road as a death-trap, due to the petroleum tankers plying on it.
Meanwhile, the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, has shut down the depot to carry out inquest on the cause of the incidence.
According to the Lagos Zonal section of the agency, “Whenever things like this happen we send a team that goes for the preliminary fact-finding, thereafter, a panel of inquest would be set up by the safety people for an accident inquest.
“The objective of such inquest is to find out the immediate and the remote cause of the fire, whether there are safety issues and what triggered the incidence if appropriate safety measures were carried out to prevent the accident and then ultimately to explore ways and means to prevent recurrence in the future.
“It’s after the inquest that appropriate sanctioning will be made, either to withdraw the depot license or fines the depot.”