In less than three months, there have three boat mishaps in Lagos State.
The National Inland Waterway Authority, NIWA, has recovered the body of the victim of the boat mishap that occurred at Bonny Camp in Victoria Island, Lagos on May 18.
Eight of the nine people on board the boat were rescued alive while one of the passengers, a woman could not be accounted for.
The Head of the Marine Department of NIWA, Sarat Suleiman, said that the body of the woman was recovered at around mid day on Tuesday.
“Just this afternoon at around 12 noon, the water brought the dead body out to CMS here; the rescue team has been in the water to recover the body.’’
Recounting the mishap, Ms. Suleiman said that a heavy wind blew against the boat and that the operator could not control the situation.
“The stormy wind which hit the boat led to the accident.
“Adherence to the use of life jackets helped in the rescue of eight people in the incident.
“There is a law that no boat must move after 6.00 pm but people were illegally moved from Ilasa Beach on that Saturday to Bonny Camp in the night when we have closed for work.
“We did not expect any boat to be on water by then. Nine people were on board, eight were rescued alive but unfortunately a woman lost her life,’’ Ms. Suleiman said.
The official commended the Association of Tourist Boat Operators, Water Transporters of Nigeria and fishermen for rising up to the challenge before the arrival of NIWA rescue team.
“When we received the distress call, we alerted our rescue team but eight had already been rescued by the operators’ association members with fishermen around the location.’’
She urged boat operators and passengers to desist from night trips to save their lives.
Also speaking, Olayinka Marinho, the Managing Director of the Lagos State Waterways Authority, said that the authority had warned passengers and operators against traveling at night.
Mr. Marinho decried the failure of passengers and operators to heed warning on their safety, adding that any person who disregarded the law did so at his or her own risk.
The latest incident is the third in the state in less than three months.
Last March, no fewer than 18 people died at the FESTAC Canal while nine others drowned last month at the Ikorodu waterways on the outskirts of Lagos.
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