There was fire outbreak in Ijegun community of Lagos state after suspected hoodlums vandalized a pipeline belonging to the National Petroleum Corporation which led to the loss of lives and property in the area.
An eye witness, Samson Johnson, said the sound of the explosion woke people up and adding to the number of casualties when they are running for their lives. Johnson said, “we were still sleeping when we heard a strange sound, and everybody was trying to figure out what happened until we saw fire everywhere around Ijegun last Bus Stop and in the process of running for our lives, many even lost their lives.”
The spokesperson for NEMA, South West zone, Ibrahim Farinloye, in a release said the agency had notified the NNPC management about the development.
“NEMA has also called on the safety unit of the corporation to immediately shut down further supplies through the pipeline in order to suffocate the fire. It is noted that vandals are responsible for the incident and some of them are affected in the inferno. Security agencies have cordoned off the area to restrict access of undesirable elements. People should remain calm,” he added.
In a recent update, the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency has said two people have been confirmed dead and 30 vehicles burnt in the Ijegun, Lagos pipeline explosion. The spokesperson for the agency said the total loss would be determined at the end of the ongoing firefighting operation.
He said, “On arrival of the LRT at the scene of the incident, it was gathered that some vandals were engaged in illegal bunkering activities at Fire Junction, Ijegun, within the vicinity where NNPC pipelines were buried.
“The vandals had already siphoned petrol into a 33,000 litres tanker while a second tanker of the same capacity was being loaded when security agencies suddenly intercepted them. While trying to escape, some of the siphoned fuel spurred into the drainage and the vandals were alleged to have set the spilt fuel on fire in a bid to deter the security agencies from apprehending them. The fire eventually returned to the pipeline point from where the vandals siphoned the fuel and exploded with escalating fire which led to two fatalities and over 30 vehicles burnt. The actual loss will be determined upon conducting post-disaster enumeration after the fire has been put out.”
The agency spokesperson called on people to remain calm until the success of the operation for a proper briefing on the casualties recorded.