Five Dead As Boat Capsizes In Lagos
Five persons have died following a commercial boat accident that occurred at about 8.00 pm on Friday along the Ikorodu Channel of the Lagos State Waterways.
This was contained in a statement by the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA), signed by the General Manager, Oluwadamilola Emmanuel.
He revealed that 16 passengers were however rescued from the 20 passenger capacity ferry, which had 21 persons on board.
According to him, the ferry operator disobeyed warning that against violating the laid down rule of ‘No Night travelling’ on the waterways.
The manager said the incident, which could have been avoided, occurred after the ferry took off illegally from Èbúté Ẹrọ Jetty at about few minutes past 8.00 pm and headed towards Ikorodu.
The boat then rammed into an unforeseen object on the waterways, causing it to capsize.
The rescue efforts were said to have commenced immediately, saving 16 peopel including one in critical condition, however five others died.
Lagos State Commissioner for Transportation, Dr. Frederic Oladeinde, and the General Manager LASWA, Mr Damilola Emmanuel, who were at the scene of the incident on Saturday morning confirmed this.
The Commissioner for Transportation while commiserating with the families of the deceased, assured that the violators of the law will be prosecuted as the unfortunate incident is already under investigation.
Oladeinde urged Ferry Operators to desist from breaking the laid down safety guidelines to avoid incidents of this nature.
He opined that if the rule of no night travelling on the waterways had been strictly adhered to by operators, the accident could have been averted.
Emmanuel, also speaking, reiterated that henceforth any operator who violates any of safety guidelines especially the ‘no night travelling’ rule, would be arrested by the Marine Police and the boat in use would be confiscated.
He urged passengers to stop late night journeys on the waterways, as any passenger found on board such boats will also be prosecuted in accordance with the relevant laws of the state.