3 April 2014

Nigeria: Eight Die As Passenger Boat Capsizes in Lagos

Photo: This Day
Capsized Boat

Exactly three weeks after a boat capsized at the 4th Avenue area of FESTAC Town, Lagos, another one Wednesday with 26 passengers on board, overturned at the Ikorodu area, claiming the lives of eight persons.

Twelve of the passengers were however lucky as they survived the accident while six others are still missing.

The accident also came barely a month after another boat capsized at Ogogoro village, Boulos, Navy Town, Apapa, Lagos, killing about 10 persons, including a mother and her child.

The ill-fated boat belonging to Bell Marine Services was said to have taken off from Ebute-Ero jetty on the Lagos Island and was heading to Majidun jetty at Ikorodu when turbulent waves upturned it.

A combined team of emergency and rescue workers drawn from different agencies in the state who were mobilised to the scene of the accident rescued 20 persons, while the search is ongoing for the six remaining passengers, who have been declared missing.

THISDAY gathered that hours after they were rescued, eight of the passengers died from complications arising from hypothermia (too much exposure to cold) and shock.

Confirming the incident, Public Relations Officer, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), South-west, Mr. Ibrahim Farinloye, said rescue agencies received the information two hours after the accident occurred and quickly moved to the scene for the rescue operation.

He said: "The boat capsized between Eko Bridge and Ikorodu waterways and at the end of the rescue operation, a total of 20 persons were rescued alive while we continued to search for the remaining persons who we gathered were onboard the boat.

"The figure of the missing persons is based on the assumption of the number of those on board as at the time of the incident."

He lamented that one of the challenges facing water transportation is the lack of essential safety facilities, especially safety jackets and first aid in the craft, as well as the challenge of overloading of the craft.

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