National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has explained that the explosion which
rocked the Abule-Ado community Lagos, in the early house of Sunday the 15th
of March was not triggered by pipeline vandals. Dr. Kennie Obateru, the Group
General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the NNPC, said the explosion
was actually caused by a collision between a truck and gas cylinders stacked at
a gas processing plant near the NNPC’s system 2B Pipeline Right of Way. In a
statement in Abuja, Dr. Obateru stated that the corporation has since halted on-going
pumping operations on the Atlas Cove-Mosimi pipeline which was active at the
Obateru explained that the NNPC had already mobilized its in-house combined team consisting of Health, Safety, Environment experts, medical and security personnel from its nearby Satellite Depot in Lagos, to the community. He added that the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari and other top management of the corporation departed to Lagos this evening for an on-the-spot assessment at the scene of the incident. He assured Nigerians that the shutdown of the petroleum products pipeline was a temporary measure which would not affect the usual supply of products either to Lagos or its environs.
Fire-fighters have managed to contain the situation.
Pictures and eye witness reports making the rounds on social media show that the impact of the explosion was so massive that it caused the collapse of nearby houses and damaged many vehicles. Nigeria’s National Emergency Management Agency is reporting the recovery of about 15 corpses so far, including a family of 4. Up to 60 casualties have also been reported from Bethlehem Girls’ College.