Two persons, including a seven-year-old boy, were confirmed dead and seven others injured as a petrol station located in Adigbe area of Abeokuta, Ogun State went up in flames yesterday.
The station, RAB Engineering petrol station, located opposite the popular Iya Sunday food canteen, was reported to have caught fire as a welder worked on a fuel tank beside a gas base in the premises. The fire later spread to about six shops opposite the fuel station.
It took men of the state fire service and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) to put off the fire, which destroyed property worth millions of naira.
Speaking to journalists at the scene, the director of the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Mr. Shakiru Adebakin, said the incident was a “man-made error that could have been averted if the owner of the station had followed simple protection mechanism.”
He said that the owner of the station should have known that it was wrong to have allowed welding works to take place in the station, adding that if such welding works were going to take place at all, certain precautionary measures ought to have been put in place.
Also speaking, the state commandant of the NSCDC, Aboluwoye Akinwande, who confirmed the incident, said: “We had a distress call that there was a fire outbreak at one of the filing stations at Adigbe. On getting there, we discovered that a particular welder was trying to weld very close to a gas filing plant, which immediately caught fire and quickly spread to nearby shops.”
In another development, a residential house at Oke-Ira, Ogba in Lagos State was yesterday gutted by fire. According to a resident in the area, who spoke to newsmen, the fire outbreak started around 11a.m.
The eyewitness claimed that an ill-equipped fire service was unable to bring the fire under control until two other fire service teams came to help later in the day.