Following the tanker accident on the Kara Bridge of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway on Tuesday, the Lagos State government has said it would commission an inquiry into the persistence of tanker and trailer accidents in the state.
Gbenga Omotoso, the commissioner for information and strategy, in a statement on Wednesday night, said the government would no longer tolerate the recklessness of truck drivers when transporting goods on Lagos roads.
“Over the last three months, Lagos State has experienced an upsurge in the number of trailers/tankers involved in major accidents on the expressways and major arteries,” Mr Omotoso said.
“We will continue to encourage people to do business in Lagos, but we will not allow the lives of Lagosians and visitors to be put at risk.”
On Tuesday evening, a petroleum tanker fell on the bridge, spilled its contents, and went up in flames. Another accident at the Magboro area involved a heavy-duty truck carrying farm products. Both incidents caused traffic gridlock on both sides of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway that persisted until Wednesday.
Mr Omotoso said the state’s Vehicle Inspection Services (VIS) has been directed to step up its activities in the government’s bid to stop such accidents involving trucks and others.
He said the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) has also been mandated to continue its support for Ogun State and Federal Government traffic and emergency management agencies by providing evacuation expertise and equipment for quick removal of vehicles involved in crashes on the expressway.
“The government is also curious about the persistence of tanker accidents at the Berger end of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway and the resultant gridlock that trails the incidents, spiralling through the entire Ikeja axis of the State and traumatising motorists and commuters.
“The Vehicle Inspection Service will step up its services to prevent issuance of Road Worthiness Certificates to undeserving vehicles, particularly trucks that are not fit to ply our roads.”
Mr Omotoso said the Lagos State government would to engage its Ogun counterpart as well as federal government agencies to identify the cause of the recurring Lagos-Ibadan Expressway accidents and fashion out solutions.
“Besides, the Lagos State government will commission an inquiry to ascertain that the accidents involving tankers and articulated vehicles, which seem to have developed a consistent pattern, are not deliberate acts of carnage.
“Such accidents have consistently happened midweek, specifically on Tuesday and Wednesday, leaving traffic tailing onto the Third Mainland Bridge, Agidingbi, Ikeja and even Oregun, in many instances.”