Five dead, 15 vehicles destroyed as phone call triggers Lagos gas explosion – report

Five persons were confirmed dead on Tuesday in a deadly  gas explosion on Ojekunle Street, off Ladipo Street, in the Mushin area of Lagos State.

According to Punch No fewer than 15 vehicles were also destroyed by the explosion, which damaged many houses in the area.

INTEL REGION Understands through punch who visited the scene, observed that the site was a mishmash of shattered blocks, wood, iron, cars, and hundreds of gas cylinders.

The workshop where the explosion occurred housed mechanics, panel beaters, gas retailers and other traders.

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Eyewitnesses, who spoke to PUNCH Metro, said the incident happened when a woman, identified as Mama Emma, was frying puff-puff around 7.30am.

INTEL REGION understands  that around the same time, a gas retailer, identified as Sodiq, was dispensing gas from a cylinder to another for a customer. Sodiq usually sold gas to panel beaters in the workshop.

Witnesses said while dispensing the gas, his customer received a call, which triggered the explosion.

Sodiq, the customer, Mama Emma and two others were burnt to death, as their remains were bagged and handed over to their families for burial.

 

Many traders, who became devastated at the scene, described the gas retailer as a hard-working man who did not deserve to die in such a cruel manner.

Over 15 vehicles on the premises were shattered by the blast.

INTEL REGION understands through punch, that at least 15 vehicles of different brands whose engines were destroyed by the explosion.

Some of the beneath rubble caused by the blast, as sheds used by mechanics were uprooted and fell flat on the shattered vehicles.

A mechanic whose workshop was on the site, Tajudeen Olorunwa, told PUNCH Metro that his car, a Toyota Highlander, and four others belonging to his customers, were affected.

Olorunwa said he had never experienced such losses in his 24 years at the workshop.

Speaking in Yoruba, he said, “I thank God for the preservation of my life.  I had a vehicle in my workshop when the explosion happened and four others belonging to my customers. The vehicles were for repairs, but I have informed their owners and they have asked me to send photos of the damage.”

He noted that one of his apprentices was severely injured and had been rushed to a nearby hospital.

Another mechanic, who identified himself only as Ahmed, said he was at the workshop around 7am shortly before the blast.

He said, “I was here sleeping in one of the vehicles when one of us was hit by a motorcycle. I and another apprentice rushed the victim to a nearby hospital and on our return, we saw that the explosion had occurred.

“I could have been burnt too if I didn’t rush the victim to the hospital. I used to sleep in one of the cars now destroyed by the blast. I will thank God forever for creating a way for my escape.”

An eyewitness, Juliet Nwokedi, who worked opposite the scene of the incident, said the body of the gas retailer was shattered by the explosion.

Another eyewitness, Pastor Micheal Ogunremi, who claimed to live close to the scene of the incident, said the workshop was once shut by the state government, but the lock was broken.

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