Traders on Ogun State’s Lambe-Matogun road have recounted their losses after a fuel tanker exploded on Saturday, destroying their shops and properties.
The fire is said to have destroyed five shops worth millions of naira, including electricity cables.
According to residents, the petrol tanker crashed around 8 a.m,
The residents had put out the fire in the shops by the time the Ogun State Fire Service arrived from Ota.
According to the residents, no lives were lost.
Olowolagba Abosede, a caterer and event planner who recently rented one of the affected shops for her business, lamented that nothing was left of her shop except debris from the burned items.
“I rented this place last Monday. I am a caterer and a decorator. I have lost a lot to this incident: my oven, tables, decoration materials, cake materials, bags of flour sugar and so on.
“I can’t find anything there now, millions of naira are all gone,” she said.
Mary Akande, a fish seller, also claimed to have lost millions due to the loss of her freezer, generator, and other items
“I am still shocked because I was here around 6 a.m. today, I did some cleaning and left to get fuel. At about 8 a.m., a friend called me to say that a tanker had exploded and my shop was on fire.
“I was helpless when I got here, the guys around tried their best but we could not retrieve anything from the shop. We reached out to the fire service but they got here two hours later.”
Also, the landlord of the premises, Olafusi Gbenga, said the trailer fell as a result of the condition of the road.
“The road is not smooth and commuters are struggling to pass on a daily basis, so when the tanker got there it lost its balance, fell and caught fire.
“My tenants have lost goods worth millions of naira to this incident, one of them just moved in with her goods a few days ago.
“I hope this incident will get the government’s attention to the neglect that we experience over here at Matogbun, Olambe, Legun and other neighbouring communities.
“We need our road fixed as soon as possible. Thank God my tenants were not inside the shops when the incident happened.”
Ogun Fire Service blames distance and road for lateness
An official of the Ogun State Fire and Safety Services, who declined to give his name, blamed the delay on the distance from Ota to Matogbun and the bad road.
“We received the call around 8 a.m., so immediately we left Ota and we got here around 10 to 11 a.m., as a result of the distance and bad road,” he said.
“Although the residents tried to get out the fire, when we got here we had to still put things under control to stop the fire on the tanker and the smoke.
“We are still going to remain here to make sure the smoke does not ignite another fire.”