No fewer than four persons were crushed to death Thursday when a train derailed at the Abattoir area of Agege, Lagos, which also left several others with varying degree of injuries.
Another five persons were also confirmed dead and 19 others injured in a multiple car crash at Berger area along the Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
According to an eyewitness account, the train went off its track and would have caused untold destruction but for a nearby trailer into which the train rammed, stopping it from veering off further.
It was gathered that the four persons that died were passengers hanging on the rooftop of the moving train.
In the chaos that ensued after the crash, it took the efforts of the Railway Police Command and other emergency responders to get the situation under control.
Confirming the incident, the state police spokesman, Olarinde Famous-Cole, said the train rammed into a trailer, injuring many, adding that the official figure of the dead was three.
He said: “We just got the information. Our policemen and those attached to the railway command are in control of the situation. Three persons died in the incident and some others were injured.”
Also speaking on the accident, the General Manager, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), Mr. Adesina Tiamiyu, said the trailer with registration number MYM 63 XA was trying to make a U-turn near the railway track when it was hit by the train.
He said: “According to investigation conducted by the agency, it was revealed that four male adults who were said to be hanging on the moving train were confirmed dead, while others sustained injuries.
“Those injured were attended to by the Lagos State Ambulance Service and the deceased persons were taken away to the mortuary.”
The state Commissioner for Special Duties, Mr. Oluseye Oladejo, was at the scene of the incident to supervise the emergency responders on the ground.
Asides LASEMA, the emergency responders included the state ambulance service, Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), Lagos Neighbourhood and Safety Corps, Rapid Response Squad, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and the police.
In the multiple road crash at the Berger area of the state, five persons also perished while 19 were injured.
LASEMA’s general manager said the accident occurred at the Kara bridge, adding that the multiple accidents involved 16 vehicles.
He said the 19 injured persons were taken to the state trauma centre for treatment.
According to him, “The LASEMA Response Unit today at about 7 a.m. responded to the multiple accidents which occurred at Kara bridge along Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
“The multiple accidents which occurred outside the jurisdiction of the agency resulted in a gridlock along the expressway, disrupting vehicular movement.
“However, due to the prompt intervention and immediate deployment of the agency’s operatives and equipment to the accident scene, the LASEMA response unit assisted in clearing and recovering affected vehicles in order to facilitate free flow of traffic.
“On arrival at the scene of the incident, it was discovered there was a multiple accident involving 15 vehicles consisting of seven trucks, one pick up, three cars and four buses.
“The vehicles comprised a Man Diesel truck with registration number JJJ 342XD (Lagos); three DAF trucks with one unknown registration, APP 769XR (Lagos), GGE 818XC (Lagos); two Sino trucks with registration numbers KRD 122 XC (Lagos), KRD 123 XC (Lagos); a Mack truck with registration number BDG 561 XG (Lagos); and a Nissan cabster with registration XS 216KSF (Lagos).
“Others included two Honda Accords with registration numbers MUS 411DG (Lagos), APP 303DV (Lagos); a Lexus SUV with registration number FKJ 475BR (Lagos); a Volkswagen mini-bus with registration number KTU 594XM (Lagos); Ford bus with registration number KTU 340XU (Lagos); Mazda bus with registration number AKD 520XW (Lagos); and a Nissan bus with registration number BDG 27AA (Lagos).
“Although the cause of the multiple accidents are unknown, unfortunately, five lives were lost, while 19 persons sustained various degrees of injuries. The 19 injured comprised 11 adult males and eight females.”
Adesina, who said a thorough investigation would be conducted into the accidents, advised motorists to adhere to road safety rules.
He also urged people who are in the habit of hanging on to moving train/vehicles to desist from doing so to prevent fatal accidents.