Rescue efforts by officials of Anambra Fire Service, Police and Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, on Sunday prevented a fire disaster at the middle of the Niger Bridge linking Delta and Anambra.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that this followed a head-on collision of two articulated vehicles laden with petrol coming from both sides of Asaba and Onitsha on the bridge.
A witness said the incident occurred at about 10 a.m. at the ever busy bridge.
According to the source, one of the articulated vehicles started emitting smoke which triggered panic among commuters plying the bridge.
“If not for the prompt response of men of the FRSC, police, who used helicopter to monitor situation and fire service, hundreds of people trapped on the bridge would have been consumed by fire.
“The incident caused traffic on the bridge as motorists had to wait for about two hours before the smoke was put out and the vehicles towed away by personnel of FRSC,” the source said.
Confirming the incident, FRSC Sector Commander in Anambra, Sunday Ajayi, said that no fire or death was recorded in the accident, adding that traffic had returned to normalcy on the bridge.
“There was an accident caused by break failure of one of the tankers but the two vehicles have been removed by our tow truck and there is now free flow of traffic on the bridge,” the commander said.
He advised vehicle owners to always keep their vehicles in shape to meet minimum safety standards during accidents.
Meanwhile, the National Publicity Secretary of Campaign for Democracy, Dede Uzor, has urged the Federal Government to expedite action on the second Niger Bridge to avert such dangers.
“This has further reiterated the need for the Federal Government to stop playing politics with the second Niger Bridge and rather expedite action to save lives.
“Nigerians will see the completion of the second Niger Bridge as one of the dividends of democracy under President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration,” Mr. Uzor told NAN in a telephone interview.
He commended the FRSC and police for ensuring free flow of traffic and security of lives during the Yuletide in the state.