A gas tanker explosion that occurred at the Ifako-Ijaye area of Lagos on Thursday, September 24, 2020, has left at least 50 people with different degrees of burn injuries.
According to the Director-General of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), Dr Olufemi Damilola Oke-Osanyintolu, who confirmed the incident, an event centre and a plank market were also destroyed.
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He said, “The Agency has activated its response plan to the fire incident at Cele Bus Stop, Ifako-Ijaye LGA and will provide further updates, Lagosians are kindly urged to exercise calm.’’
The statement from LASEMA said that an unidentified truck conveying gasoline had a lone accident and exploded.
According to LASEMA, the impact of the explosion led to a fire outbreak in nearby buildings and several vehicles were also burnt. The statement also claimed that several persons were injured and have been taken to hospitals for treatment.
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While speaking to Channels Television at the site of the explosion, the LASEMA’s Director of Operations, Engr Olatunde Akinsanya disclosed that about 16 people have been confirmed to be critically injured and taken to the Iju Water Works clinic.
Akinsanya confirmed that the gas tanker explosion took place at about 3:30 pm and had several buildings and cars destroyed by its impact.
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It was alleged that the tanker was supposed to offload 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 offload the content in his tanker, the driver moved out of the premises.
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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 then ended in a ditch, where a second explosion erupted.
It was also disclosed that the second explosion sent the tanker flying and destroying buildings on its path, including a church.