Tragedy struck on Friday in Akure, the Ondo State capital, as a tanker fully loaded with petrol crushed a commercial motorcyclist to death.
SaharaReporters gathered that the fully-loaded petrol tanker belonging to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) developed brake failure and rammed into Kayode Esan, who died on the spot.
The incident happened at the popular Iye-Oma Plaza Junction at the Alagbaka axis of Akure and caused traffic gridlock for several hours.
It was learnt that Esan, who hailed from Iju/Ita Ogbolu in Akure North Local Government of the state, got married recently.
Several eyewitnesses who spoke to our correspondent said the distressed tanker driver had noticed the mechanical fault and tried to alert road users.
“The incident occurred around 9am today when there was traffic on the road. The petrol tanker driver had noticed the mechanic fault and having seen the traffic, he started shouting about his brake failure. However, the traffic warden did not immediately see the tanker driver who was on high speed, and he passed others on the other side of the road.
“The ‘okada’ man was so unlucky as he got trapped in the middle of the road. He was crushed and died instantly.”
After the death of the motorcyclist, other commercial motocylists attempted to set the petrol tanker on fire and lynch the driver. It took the timely intervention of security agencies, mostly officers of Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) in the Ondo State Sector Command, to prevent the angry road users from taking laws into their hands.
Still dissatisfied, the motorcyclists embarked on a protest within the state capital, causing traffic jam and assaulting traffic wardens stationed at Alagbaka and en route the Ilesha park axis. They blamed the traffic warden for the accident and untimely death of their colleague.
Speaking on the incident, Olusegun Ogungbemide, Deputy Corps Commander and Head of Operations of the FRSC in Ondo State, blamed the petrol tanker driver for the accident. He also noted that the corps was able to swing into action after receiving a distress call from members of the public.
“The incident was very sad, but our men were able to rush down to the scene after the motorcylists threatened to take laws into their hands. We have moved the corpse to the morgue of the Specialist Hospital in Akure, Ondo State and the Police have taken over the case,” he said.