No fewer than 20 passengers travel ling on the Sagamu-Ore- Benin Expressway lost their lives when a truck crushed them to death during a robbery operation.
The incident which happened in the early hours of Saturday, involved a luxury bus with registration number Edo XF 285 AKD and a truck with number plate Edo XN 808 BEN. Sunday Tribune gathered that another accident that claimed two lives also occurred on Friday night around 10.45 pm, along Ijebu-Ode- Ore end of the expressway.
This accident was reported to have involved a white Toyota Hiace, marked Edo XQ 201 EKY and a blue Bedford lorry marked XA 565 WER.
The fatal accident was said to have happened around Babcock University, Ilisan junction and Odogbolu areas of the highway.
ST learnt that the luxury bus which was on a night journey to the Eastern part of the country, unfortunately, ran into a gang of armed robbers operating on the expressway.
The robbers were reported to have blocked the highway with a huge log of wood and ordered the passengers to disembark from the bus.
The innocent passengers it was learnt, were ordered to lie down on the highway before a trailer said to be on top speed ran over the robbery victims and killed all of them.
Confirming the incident, the Sector Commander, Federal Road Safety Commission, (FRSC), Ogun State, Mr. Olu-Mike Olagunju, said that he could not ascertain the cause of the accident as at the time of filing this report.
He said that 13 men and seven women lost their lives immediately while two men were reported to have been seriously injured.
He said,” This incident is unfortunate. What we observed is that there was no dent on the luxury bus, which indicated that the vehicles did not run to each other. The most likely cause of the accident could be because of the activities of armed robbers.
“We have said it over and over again that people should avoid night journeys. If people do not travel at nights, there is hardly a way that kind of accident would not be avoided. At least the truck would have seen people lying on the road while the motorists would have even known that robbers were operating on the road.”
Meanwhile, 16 people were also crushed to death at Ikotun Lagos by a trailer, which was descending a slope near synagogue church on Saturday evening, and victims were mainly roadside trailers.
The tragedy was caused by brake failure and many were trapped.
Sympathisers wailed as rescuers retrieved the wounded, who were still gasping for breath. Mutilated bodies, including that of children littered the area.
Meanwhile A man, rushed to a private hospital in Shagamu, Ogun State after being critically wounded in an accident when his brand new Toyota car rammed into a stationary truck on Saturday, at Kilometer 79, Lagos – Ibadan Road, may owe his life to his seat belt.
The accident, involving a Toyota car marked Lagos RA 316 AAA which occurred at about 7.00 am according to eye witnesses, incidentally took place just a few minutes before a 14- seater Toyota commuter bus marked XP 409 GGE chartered by the Christ Apostolic Church, Oke Aanu, Apapa in Lagos State for an engagement in Ogun State was also involved in another accident near same spot, sending all occupants to another hospital.
While eye witnesses could not ascertain why the car driver failed to sight the stationary truck, they however agreed on the fact that the man must thank his God for his seat belt, in addition to the timely assistance of two towing vehicle operators, who, in the absence of any policeman came to his rescue, and took him to Owokoniran Hospital, in Shagamu.
One of the towing vehicle operators told the Sunday Tribune that having discovered that the man from all indications would survive the accident if timely assisted, said they felt compelled to offer the little assistance they could by salvaging him from his wrecked car, and spiriting him away to the hospital.