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FRSC reveals cause of Rivers fire disaster

…says Indorama helped to remove trucks and evacuate carcasses

By Bon Peters

The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) says it has identified the cause of the weekend fire disaster that consumed five persons including a pregnant woman and 120 vehicles along the ongoing reconstructed section of the East-West Road in Rivers State.

The Rivers Sector Commander, FRSC, Chris Kuje, was quoted as saying that the “preliminary investigations have revealed that the tragedy was caused by two tanker drivers, who were jostling for space.”

Continuing, Kuje maintained that “during the struggle, the trucks collided sideways and caused a rupture in the trailer of one truck carrying a petroleum product.”

He added that the inflammable product spilled from the ruptured part and ignited the fire that claimed lives and consumed properties worth billions of naira even as he emphasised that “preliminary investigation revealed that the incident happened on the Eleme East-West Road which is currently under renovation.”

Insisting that “Two truck drivers were jostling for space when their vehicles collided sideways, causing a rupture in the trailer of one truck carrying petroleum which resulted in petrol leaking onto the road and igniting into a fire explosion.”

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He reiterated that the personnel of FRSC deployed at the scene controlled traffic and created diversion through Oyigbo as an alternative route to ease congestion, noting that following the directive of the governor, the corps mobilised Indorama Petrochemicals which provided cranes that successfully removed all the trucks from the road on Saturday.

Kuje said: “We met the directive of the Governor of Rivers State to ensure that the road is freed for movement before the close of the day.

“We mobilised Indorama Petrochemicals to provide a Crane that successfully removed all the trucks from the road at about 5:30 pm, the carcasses were also evacuated away by low bed trucks provided by the same company.

“Staff from three Commands namely RS6.1 (Rivers sector), RS6.11 (Eleme Unit Command) and RS6.16 (Obio-Akpor Unit Command) were mobilised to the scene for effective traffic management. Vehicular movement was fully restored by removing all obstructions,” he said.

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