Avoiding deaths by container-laden trucks


No fewer than nine passengers were reportedly crushed to death as a 20ft laden container fell on a commercial bus in the Ojuelegba area of Lagos State on Sunday

It was learnt that the commercial bus was picking up passengers at the bus stop along the Ojuelegba Bridge when the truck lost control and fell over the side of the bridge.

Towards Christmas last year, some commuters were also reportedly killed when a 40ft container fell on vehicles plying the Cele bus stop along the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway, Lagos State.

The report has it that a driver of one of the popular yellow commercial buses was immediately confirmed dead while the other two managed to escape.

About five of the passengers in the bus that the container fell on were rushed to the hospital and confirmed dead.

According to a report from the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) a total of 6,205 were said to have lost died as a result of accident in the year 2021. This figure, many believed is conservative as there are many unreported accident across the country.

Yes, road accident, which could be as a result of human error or mechanical fault happens all over the world but you hardly hear or read about a container falling off on another vehicle killing everyone on board yet this is a frequent disaster in Nigeria, especially, Lagos State.

It is so reprehensible that some precious souls who have complied with the traffic rules with no thought of leaving this world in the next 40 years will suddenly be stone cold dead after a container from nowhere drop on their vehicles, terminating blossoming dreams and causing many family eternal pain and anguish.

The unquantifiable loss and pains these ruthless container laden truck drivers are causing should be a source of worry to the concerned authorities in the country.

There was really a time in the past when the menace of these container laden trucks was a topical issue and some efforts were outlined as part of safety measures that could be taken to reduce these avoidable deaths caused by these trucks.

But, it seems nobody cares again how these container laden trucks move about causing great havock, untold sorrow and irreplaceable loss to individual family and country at large.

Some have suggested that these operators of these trucks must endeavour to fasten the container down to their vehicles and should also move mainly in the night when the traffic is considered light to minimize casuality if at all anything happens.

It is also a considered option that our rail service should be further strengthened and developed such that these containers are no longer moved by trucks but by rail.

Now is the time for all relevant agencies to wake up to ensure that these container laden trucks comply with the international safety best practices after all these trucks can’t only be operating in Nigeria, yet you rarely read of them responsible for re-ocurring loss of lives in other climes.