At least 12 dead bodies were recovered on Sunday at the scene of a petroleum tanker explosion at Oshigbudu junction in the Agatu Local Government Area of Benue state.
The State Sector Commander of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Yakubu Mohammed, disclosed this in a statement.
Mohammed said the tanker loaded with Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) was heading to Abuja from the Otukpo area of the state when the vehicle’s brakes allegedly failed, skidded off the road and exploded in flames.
“The number of deaths as a result of the explosion is 12 but there could be deaths that could be beyond our purview to know but the State Emergency Management Agency, SEMA or National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, may fish them out.
“You know that the houses that got burnt in the incident will not be classified as crash so when these agencies visit the houses, they may discover more corpses from the debris.
“But those involved in the crash were 12. Of the number, eight were males, three were females, and a child.
“In view of this indictment, I want to call on all petroleum tanker owners to ensure the immediate installation of safety valves on their tankers to ensure the safety of lives, properties, and the products their vehicles convey.
“It is disheartening to see some petroleum tankers still plying the roads without safety valves fixed on them despite the February 2021 deadline earlier issued.
“Any driver caught contravening the standard will risk going to jail. Tanker drivers should be safety conscious always and should abide by all safety rules and regulations.
“I assured members of the public that FRSC will not rest on its oars at ensuring discipline on the road. And the command would always be ready to respond promptly to any rescue operations just as we are ready to always partner with all stakeholders to ensure a safer road culture in Benue state,” he said.