…As panicking traders throw goods through windows to salvage it***
The Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) has blamed a generator explosion on Wednesday, for the fire outbreak at the popular Balogun Market on Lagos Island, resulting into destruction of seven buildings.
Dr Olufemi Oke-Osanyintolu, the LASEMA Director-General stated this in Lagos.
Oke-Osanyintolu said: “We were informed that some people were fueling their generator, and suddenly, the generator exploded in flames and spread to other buildings”, he stated, noting that the seven buildings gutted by fire, were all on Martins Street.
The director-general also highlighted that four of the buildings collapsed, while the rescue operation was still on.
Oke-Osanyintolu said that LASEMA and the Lagos Fire Service officials were promptly mobilised to the scene to put off the raging fire.
The director said that two of the affected buildings collapsed to ground zero, adding that LASEMA had, however, curtailed the fire from spreading to other buildings.
“We are going to carry out integrity test on all the structures, and any building that failed the integrity test will be pulled down.
“Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu is doing a lot to ensure the safety of lives and property.
“The attitude of our people is highly challenging and does not conform to the mission and vision of the governor.
“The governor has made it known that safety of lives and property is paramount in his agenda.
“However, we are appealing to our people to change their attitudes through various sensitisation and advocacy from time to time,’’ Oke-Osanyintolu said.
The LASEMA boss lauded the efforts of all key stakeholders, including Julius Berger, Federal Fire Service, Lagos State Fire and other agencies in managing emergencies as they occur in the state.
Meanwhile, the Director-General, Lagos State Safety Commission (LASSC), Mr Lanre Mojola, has expressed disappointment over the current round of fire disaster in the market.
Mojola said that his men were at the market on Jan. 19 to sensitise traders on safety and how to avoid fire outbreak that could lead to loss of lives and valuable goods.
He noted with concern that in spite of the awareness campaign, such a disaster could still occurred in the market.
Mojola assured the traders that the commission would not rest until they all key into the vision and mission of the governor on the safety of lives and property.
On Nov. 5, 2019, two buildings at No. 41 and 43, Martins Street were razed by fire.
In the meantime, the Federal Fire Service has assured that its personnel and other emergency agencies were fully on ground to control the raging fire at Balogun Market on Lagos Island.
Spokesperson for the agency, Mrs Sandra Ugo, who said this in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja, appealed to members of the public to allow firefighters do their job.
The fire which was said to have started from the Anambra Plaza on Martins Street in the market latter spread to about six other structures.
The Director-General of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), Femi Oke-Osanyintolu, had earlier confirmed to newsmen that the fire was caused by fuel stored inappropriately in one of the buildings.
Eye witnesses observed panicking traders throwing cautions to the winds as they tried to salvage their goods from the windows of the high-rise buildings.