The Senate has directed the Nigeria Police and the Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, to investigate the circumstances surrounding the explosion of a tanker laden with 33,000 litres of premium motor spirit (petrol) at the Otedola Bridge end of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway last week Thursday.
The Senate also resolved to meet with the FRSC and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, to seek amendment of extant laws needed to check accidents involving articulated vehicles.
This development followed a motion at the plenary on Wednesday by Senator Gbenga Ashafa (Lagos-East), in conjunction with senators Oluremi Tinubu (Lagos-Central) and Solomon Adeola (Lagos-West).
Granting prayers of the motion, the lawmakers resolved to “urge the FRSC, the Nigeria Police and all relevant security agencies to cooperate with Lagos State and other states in ensuring that drivers of articulated vehicles comply with all federal and state traffic safety laws.
“We urge the Nigeria Police to work in conjunction with the FRSC to carry out a thorough investigation of the circumstances leading to the accident that led to the fuel tanker fire, with the view to prosecuting anyone found culpable in this preventable fire incident.
“The relevant committees of the Senate should invite the FRSC and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation with a view to finding a legislative solution towards ensuring that, before trucks are loaded, mandatory safety checks are put in place to ascertain the condition of the tankers and the road worthiness of the vehicles.”
The lawmakers also urged all relevant security agencies to cooperate with Lagos state and other states to make sure that driver of trucks and other heavy-duty vehicles comply with traffic safety guidelines.
“I think this is something that could have been prevented if we all abide by the traffic safety guidelines and ensure the enforcement of existing laws,” Senate President Bukola Saraki said in a statement.
“This is a lesson that we need to learn from. Those agencies that are in charge of ensuring the safety of tanker movement across the country must ensure compliance to ensure that the tanker drivers have gotten adequate licenses and vehicles have received their adequate certificates showing that they are in good condition to ply our roads.
“Until we continue to do that, and hold those accountable, we will continue to see these kinds of accidents. These are things that are preventable and we must ensure that on our part that we see to prevent them.” he said