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Otedola Fire: We’re ready to partner govt to curb tanker accidents — NUPENG

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By Victor Ahiuma-Young, Chioma Obinna & Ebun Sessou

8 families show up for DNA test
As Lagos Assembly vows to review traffic laws

LAGOS—FOLLOWING the recent  Otedola link bridge fire accident in Lagos, the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, yesterday, said it was prepared to partner Lagos State Government by complying with its directives on how to checkmate tanker related road accidents in the state.

Otedola bridge
The vehicles caught in the petrol tanker fire on the Otedola bridge in Lagos

This came as the Head, Lagos State DNA and Forensic Centre, Dr. Richard Somiari yesterday confirmed that no fewer than eight families have shown up for DNA test in connection with the Otedola Link bridge fire accident.

Also, the  Lagos State House of Assembly has called for a review of movement of trailers in the state even as it urged Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State to restrict the movement of long vehicles to 9 pm and the early hours of the day.

We’ll partner with govt — NUPENG

The Lagos Zonal Chairman of NUPENG, Tayo Aboyeji, told newsmen that the recent tanker explosion in the state that claimed about 12 lives and destroyed properties was unfortunate, saying the union would take adequate measure to ensure that such occurrence never happened again.

Aboyeji said: ‘’Tanker drivers are law abiding citizens and we, as a union, are ready to corporate with the government to ensure safety on the road. Our members are responsible people and I want to appeal to people to stop seeing us (tanker drivers) as  nobody or irresponsible. No driver wishes or plans to have an accident. It is so unfortunate.”

8 families show up for DNA testing

Meanwhile, the head of the Lagos State DNA and Forensic Centre  has  disclosed that more families are still being expected at the facility saying “We will expect that these categories of people will come.”

Giving details into the process, he said: “There are two processes involved including the actual DNA matching and the process by the pathologist who takes samples from the remains that were recovered. The actual process in our laboratory is fast. The thing is the quality of the sample that is coming from the victim. So, until we get those samples from the pathologist, we do not know how long it will take. If it is significantly degraded, then it means we have to go through multiple steps of isolation and clean up before we do the profile generation.

“We  realised  that everybody will like to get the result fast and bring a closure to this, but at the same time we want to be careful.”

Lagos Assembly set to review traffic law

Similarly, the  Lagos State House of Assembly, in a motion moved by  leader of the House, Mr. Sanai Agunbiade called for a review of issues surrounding movement of trailers in the state.

The motion was moved by 14 members of the House.

The House urged the Governor to direct the State Commissioner for Transportation, Mr. Dipo Lawanson to ensure that long vehicles do not ply the roads in the state until 9 pm.

Agunbiade said: “The House observed that the fire incident around Otedola Estate on Thursday, June 28, led to avoidable deaths of several people and destroyed many properties.

“We noticed that the incident was caused by recklessness on the part of the driver, over-speeding, drinking of alcohol amongst others.   It is also observed that many of the drivers do not have a drivers’ license and many of the vehicles are not roadworthy.”

In his remarks, the Speaker of the House, Mr. Mudashiru Obasa suggested that the state Commissioner for Transport should meet with the insurance companies so that the policies would be done properly.

Obasa  said:  “Our traffic laws should be reviewed to reduce a loss of lives on our roads. If the Otedola Estate incident had happened at night, the casualty would have been minimal.”

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