August 28, 2022

Gridlock as truck bursts into flames in Lagos

By Olasunkanmi Akoni

Motorists, commuters and other road users were Sunday, stranded for several hours in gridlock as a result of truck which exploded into flames along Lagos-Ibadan Expressway outward Otedola Bridge.

The situation which occurred around 3.30 pm, forced other motorists to make quick diversion to alternative routes as some drivers seized the opportunity to drive against the traffic (One-Way) which aggravated the gridlock on the road. 

Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Emergency Management Authority, LASEMA, Dr. Olufemi Oke-Osanyintolu said the agency subsequently raced to the scene bringing the situation under control.

Osanyintolu said the agency responded to the distress call concerning the above incident and upon arrival discovered a truck conveying sugar engulfed by fire. 

“Initial information gathered revealed that the fire emanated from the truck head due to electrical fault.

“Neither mortality nor injury was recorded at the scene of the incident.

The fire has been curtailed from escalating to the products by the combined effort of the agency’s LRT and Lagos State fire service which put out the ranging fire,” Oke-Osanyintolu said.

As of press time, 6.30 pm, damping down operation was still ongoing as normalcy returned. 

Opic-Berger gridlock

Meanwhile, Lagos and Ogun states government have been working with the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing to ensure that the congestion experienced at OPIC-Berger on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway between Friday 26 and Saturday 27 August, 2022 never reoccurs.

In a statement released by the Federal Controller of Works, Engr. F. Oloyede, the ongoing work on the Berger-OPIC axis is geared towards the timely completion of the reconstruction of the expressway to deliver a world class road that will make driving on the expressway a smooth experience.

Oloyede, however blamed the massive traffic gridlock to the impatience of some motorists who drive against traffic at the slightest excuse, thus causing enormous hardship to other motorists.

“As agreed by all parties, the contractor has been directed to block all illegal road diversions, especially between Magboro and OPIC. This is to prevent the illegal U-turn at OPIC, which also exacerbates the gridlock within that axis.

“Law Enforcement Agencies, including the Police, Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, and LASTMA, have been engaged to control traffic along the route.

“Any motorist caught removing any of the barriers used in blocking all illegal diversions will be arrested and prosecuted. Motorists are, therefore, advised to desist from this or face the full wrath of the law.

“Lagos and Ogun Traffic Management Personnel are available to ensure free flow of traffic. Motorists who drive against the traffic (one-way) or make a turn at unauthorised junctions will regret their indiscretion. They will be prosecuted.

“Security has been strengthened around the corridor. The project promises to deliver a world class transport infrastructure that will put a stop to traffic congestion on the Expressway.”