The Bayelsa Police Command on Saturday said it has recovered the remains of the victims of Thursday’s crude oil pipeline explosion within Agip’s field in the state.
Asinim Butswat, police spokesperson for Bayelsa Command said on Saturday that two people were still missing and hence not part of the death toll confirmed.
Mr. Butswat said search and rescue efforts had since been activated, but yet to yield any results.
“On Thursday, June 9th 2015, at about 1600hrs, a pipeline exploded while AGIP Staff were carrying out routine maintenance on Tebidaba-Clough line, in Southern Ijaw LGA,” Mr. Butswat said. “Twelve persons were burnt beyond recognition, which included a soldier on guard duty amongst others.
“Four persons were rescued alive and are undergoing treatment, while two persons are still missing. Search for the missing persons is ongoing.”
Agip had said on Friday that 12 people died in a pipeline explosion which occurred on Thursday afternoon at Agip’s oil fields in Azuzuama in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area in Bayelsa.
The officials of Nigerian Agip Oil Company, representatives of the host community and Bayelsa Ministry of Environment were investigating the cause of a recent oil spill in the area when the explosion occurred.
According to a statement issued by an Eni spokesperson, Filipo Cotalini, the parent company of NAOC, the cause of the explosion is being investigated.
“Eni informs that an explosion occurred yesterday, 9 July late afternoon, at the site of the repair works of the Tebidaba-Clough Creek line, an oil pipeline in Nigeria’s onshore Niger Delta, previously damaged by acts of sabotage,” the firm stated.
“The explosion resulted in the death of 12 members of the maintenance team of a local company of services, with 3 others being injured. The causes of the incident are still under investigation by both Eni and the local authorities. The company expresses its deepest condolences to the families involved in this tragic accident.”
A source who survived the incident said that an official of the National Oil Spills Detection and Response Agency was among the dead.