Reckless driving by four tanker drivers loaded with gas, diesel, petrol and another truck conveying granites along the East-West road end of Ohoror Community in Ughelli North Council area of Delta State, on Thursday, claimed the lives of two persons and burnt down 22 houses in the area.
The deceased that were burnt beyond recognition have been identified as the conductor to one of the tankers and another co-driver to the granite truck. Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, Delta State Governor who visited the scene of the accident alongside some members of his cabinet lamented on the level of devastation and immediately directed some top government functionaries to work with the firefighters to quench the fire still raging as at the time of filing this report.
The governor who was more concerned about the tank loaded with gas that was still lying on the ground urged the firefighting team Ughelli unit to mobilise more water and equipment that would contain the smoke still coming from the petrol tanker close to the gas truck to forestall further disaster in the area. Ohoror community chairman, Mr Igometi Augustine told journalists that he got a distress call on the incident at 2 am and immediately rushed out to the scene.
He said he gathered that the three (3) tankers convening gas, diesel and petrol were trying to overtake one another as the one carrying petrol hit a parked truck with granite and both fell leading to the fall of the other two tankers coming from behind them.
His account, ‘It was the very tanker that was conveying diesel that spilt everywhere along the major Expressway and the fire that sparked off from the screeching of the other falling tankers ignited the fire that took over the entire place,’ he revealed.
“The community did not lose anybody but 22 houses built along the Expressway by our people were completely burnt and many of our people have become homeless and distressed,” he stated.
“We want to appeal to the state government to come to our aid by providing our people who have lost their valuables with clothes and food first to assist them at this very critical period,” he pleaded.
Meanwhile, firefighters had mobilised additional water to the scene and were able to put out the smoke coming from the petrol tankers completely to ensure that all the dangers are averted.