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First Ship through St. Lawrence Seaway in 2015 Runs Aground

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The first ship of the 2015 season to travel up the St. Lawrence Seaway, the waterway link between North America’s Great Lakes and the Atlantic Ocean, ran aground after hitting a large floe of ice near Beauharnois, Quebec, on April 3.

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) has deployed a team of investigators to Beauharnois to gather information and assess the conditions under which the 2014-built bulk carrier CWB Marquis ran aground. At the time of the incident, the bulker was laden with 29,000 tonnes of iron ore.

The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC) marked the opening of the Seaway’s 57th navigation season April 2, with the transit of the CWB Marquis through the St. Lambert Lock.

The vessel is the first of two Equinox-class lakers ordered by Winnipeg-based grain marketer CWB that are being purpose-built for trade in the St. Lawrence Seaway.

SLSMC says that the CWB Marquis, managed by Canadian shipping company Algoma Central Corporation, is part of a CAD 4 billion (USD 3.2b) fleet renewal program being undertaken by various Great Lakes / Seaway System carriers over a span of 10 years (2009-2018).

World Maritime News; Image: CWB

Accidents

Phone-Use-Induced Accident Claims 4 Lives On Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, 5 in Kogi

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Phone-Use-Induced Accident Claims 4 Lives On Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, 5 in Kogi

After Car Plunges Into Canal

Four persons were confirmed dead in an accident that occurred, close to the Mountain Top University on the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway on Saturday. Two others also sustained varying degrees of injuries

The Public Education Officer, Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) in Ogun, Mrs Florence Okpe confirmed the incident to newsmen in Abeokuta.

Okpe said that the accident occurred at 4.53 a.m. and involved a Lexus RX 350 marked KTU 738 HM and a Mack truck with registration number T 21024 LA.

She said that the accident was caused by excessive speed and the use of phone while driving.

The FRSC spokesperson said that the bodies of those who died in the accident were deposited at the Real Divine Hospital morgue, Ibafo.

Meanwhile, Mr. Ahmed Umar, the Sector Commander, cautioned motorists on the use of phones while driving and the dangers associated with such.

He also commiserated with the families of the victims and advised them to contact FRSC Ibafo command for more information on the crash.

In another development, five persons on Saturday drowned when a car plunged into a canal along River Niger in Kogi.

The incident happened at Yagba West Local Government Area of Kogi at about 4.30 p.m. on Friday.

Mr. Pius Kolawale, Chairman, Yagba West LGA, Kogi, who confirmed the incident to NAN, said the incident was very sad and unfortunate.

Kolawale, however, confirmed that one of the five occupants in the car escaped death as he swam to safety, aided by a  fisherman, who unfortunately himself drowned.

“Among the dead are three ladies and two men, including the fisherman.

“The five of them were coming from Oga Community on their way to Lokoja but unfortunately just along the canal, where there is a very sharp corner, they lost control and went straight into the canal.

“Only one of the occupants of the car escaped while four died, including three ladies.

“The fifth person that died was a good samaritan, a fisherman, who tried to save them but died in the process, ” he told NAN.

Kolawale said that when the incident happened at about 4.30 p.m. on Friday, he put a call to the Council’s Police Divisional Officer (DPO), who came with his men and took the corpses to a morgue.

“Already, family members of the deceased have come and taken their corpses today for burial.

“That very road the incident happened is that of Niger River Basin Authority solely for the maintenance of the dam but people traveling from Oga to Lokoja take advantage of it to cross over to Ebira and continue their journey to Lokoja as a shortcut, ” he said.

The chairman appealed to the road users, especially motorists, to drive with care and avoid speed violations while plying that very road.

The state FRSC Corps Commander, Stephen Dawulung, who also confirmed the incident, described it as “very unfortunate”.

Dawulung said that the road was not a conventional one but that because of the advantage it offered to travellers as a short route, they kept plying it.

The FRSC sector commander called on motorists to always ensure they maintained traffic rules and regulations to avoid lives and property wastage.

According to him, the lone accident could have been avoided if they were not on speed on that faithful day.

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Accidents

Over 40,000 People Die Annually In Road Crashes – FRSC 

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Niger auto crash: 4 persons die, 6 injured – FRSC

…Approx 110 Nigerians die daily as 1.5m people yearly die, globally 

The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) says that over 40,000 people die annually, approximately 110 persons daily, as a result of Road Traffic Crashes in Nigeria.

Dauda Biu, Corps Marshal FRSC, said this on Monday in Abuja, during activities marking the 7th United Nations Global Road Safety Week.

He said that these facts were the unholy statistics of Road Traffic Crashes and injuries which were a leading cause of death and disability.

He also said that 1.3 million people were killed and as many as 50 million people gets injured each year globally.

According to him, there is no greater threat to people, aged 5-29 years than Road Traffic Crashes, as one in every four deaths occurs among pedestrians and cyclists.

“In Nigeria, over 40,000 persons die annually as a result of this avoidable scourge,“ he said.

The FRSC boss said that the United Nations had developed a global plan for the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2021-2030.

Articulated vehicles will not use Second Niger Bridge at Yuletide – FRSC

He said that it reflected an ambitious target to reduce road traffic deaths and injuries, which would be by 50 percent by 2030.

Biu said that the 2023 edition of the event with the theme; ‘’Sustainable Transport‘’ is slated for Monday to Sunday.

He said: “FRSC is partnering with the World Health Organisation (WHO), Federal Ministry of Health (FMH) and United Nations Decade of Action on Road Safety and Injury Prevention (UNDARSIP) to mark the event with various activities.

According to him, the need to take action to ensure safe roads, vehicles and behaviours as well as to improve emergency care is paramount.

“The 7th UN Global Road Safety Week is focusing on sustainable transport with the slogan #RethinkMobility, which necessitates the urgent need to shift to walking, cycling and using public transport.

“The key messages of this year’s event centers on the need for governments and their partners to rethink mobility.

“Ensuring safety must be at the core of efforts to re-imagine mobility and thus road networks must be designed with the most-at-risk in mind, “he said.

The Corps Marshal, however, called on government at all levels and partners to rethink mobility with a mindset to providing access to safe and affordable mobility systems for all.

Biu stressed the need for government to make available accessible, resilient, low and sustainable mobility systems to create livable cities that would fulfil the mobility needs of all.

This, he said was to ensure safety at all cost, adding that the road network must be designed in consideration of the vulnerable road users who were the most at risk in mind.

He noted that this would ensure that they feel safe walking and cycling, adding that this would further promote good health, sustainable cities and equitable society.

Meanwhile, the Focal Person/Country representative, UN decade of Action for Road safety, Prof. Sydney Ibeanusi, said that government would continue to put the issue of road safety on the front burner.

Ibeanusi said that Nigeria had a better system, saying “what we want to show the world was that the system actually exists.

“Nigeria has been chosen as a country to improve cycling, and Abuja has been chosen as one of the five states globally.

”This is for a project implementation to encourage cycling and we will not relent in our efforts,“ he said.

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17 Teenagers Seeking Firewood, Drown As Boat Capsizes In Sokoto

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Fisherman found dead on Badagry waterways

… 29 similarly drowned in April, last year 

No fewer than 17 boys and girls died after a boat they were traveling in capsized in the Dandeji River, in Shagari Local Government Area of Sokoto State.

The Council Chairman, Alhaji Aliyu Dantani, confirmed the incident to newsmen in Sokoto.

He said that the accident occurred on Tuesday morning and the corpses were evacuated by local divers and buried according to Islamic rite at about 2 30 p.m. 

The Chairman explained that about 40 girls and boys were on their way to fetch firewood at a nearby bush when the boat capsized.

He said some of the passengers swam to safety while the search for others was ongoing.

A resident, Mamman Ibrahim, said the accident was reported by a canoe owner, adding that while 17 corpses were recovered, local divers are still searching for other victims.

It would be recalled that a similar incident occurred on April 13, 2022, at Gidan Magana village where 29 persons mostly teenagers died.

The deceased were also on their way to fetch firewood, a traditional activity of children in the area, who are mostly out of school. 

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