How tragedy was averted at Delta gas explosion

Reach the right people at the right time with Nationnewslead. Try and advertise any kind of your business to users online today. Kindly contact us for your advert or publication @ Call or Whatsapp: 08168544205, 07055577376, 09122592273

EBENEZER ADUROKIYA was at the scene of a heavy gas explosion that rocked the twin city of Effurun and Warri in Delta State late Monday night and brings this report.


Some few hours after heavy explosions from a retail gas plant at Effurun, near Warri, Delta State, late Monday night, rocked the entire city with flame and clangorous noises, scores of concerned residents had gathered at the scene to behold the wonders of God; how no life was lost.

Our correspondent was at the scene as early as 7:30a.m to have a first-hand experience of the explosions. The crowd on both sides of the dual carriage Effurun-Sapele road had caused a serious vehicular gridlock, but being graciously controlled by soldiers drafted from the Military Joint Task Force (JTF).

The gas company was identified as Nelmic Gas Station, located directly opposite Goddy Edosa Motors Company Nigeria Ltd on the other side of the road. Near the scene is Alaka junction, and a two-storey office building under construction few metres away from the palatial edifice of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Mount Zion Mega Parish.

Amid unsure cause(s) of the inferno, it was gathered that a little fire erupted from a parked car and the security guards on duty attempted to put it out, but couldn’t as it spread to the gas tanks. Another source said the fire was ignited by one of the guards making a phone call. None has been confirmed to be authentic.

The scene of the explosion

In no time, the fire became huge, which attracted curious passersby and residents living across the fenced gas station some of who began to do video recordings of the inferno. This was at about 9:20a.m when both human and vehicular traffics had greatly reduced. Ignorant of the ferocity of gas fire, the uninvited guests had more than they could bargain for. This is because in split seconds, the thick, large metal tanks with gas content in the station began to explode one after the other.

As of this time, the security guards on duty were said to have already fled the scene knowing what could follow. Three heavy explosions that shook the entire area with flames seen as far as Ginuwa in Warri, occurred in quick succession! One of the tanks was lifted in ferocious flames from its resting place, flung over the front gate of the station, cut down three high tension electric cables on its way,, across over the dual carriage road and landed at the base of the overhead water tank in front of a storey building, shaking the house and other adjoining ones to their foundations. It remains a mystery how the accompanying fire stopped and how the tank did not land on the roof of the one storey building where residents including children were resting. Part of the decked balcony of the building was heavily impacted, including the the louvres and ceilings which were shattered, but with no human casualty.

Scores of sympathisers, who went to behold the wonder, joined the residents to thank God for averting what could have been a tragedy of monumental proportion. Residents of the building, most of whom were already evacuating their belongings as of Tuesday morning, were awestruck, as they couldn’t speak with our correspondent.

One of the tanks, which exploded after the fire, was flattened and flung from the premises of the gas station against the massive wall of the two storey office building under construction. The flattened metal laid flat against the wall, preventing it from reaching an all-glass cathedral building of RCCG with which they share a fence.

Eyewitnesses said what saved the RCCG mega structure was the direction of the wind that suddenly began which blew the huge flames away from the direction of the church building towards the bushy canal behind the gas station. The vegetation was not spared as the huge inferno pierced through the grove. Checks revealed abandoned foot wares of curious emergency citizen journalists who went to video the huge flames from behind before the explosions began.

Traffic gridlock caused by the explosion.

Checks at the premises of the gas plant revealed some heaps of burnt onions kept by the Hausa guards guiding the place. Obviously some of their colleagues were allowed to keep their wares overnight in the premises.

The explosion affected Uvwie residents living far away. Clothes of wife of a Hausa man, who gave his name as Ali, caught fire.  He said his house being a building away from the gas station, the impact of the explosion was grave. The fence of an incompleted structure by the right was flattened with smoke still bellowing from the debris. A car in far away Ovie Palace junction, which was in motion during the earthquaking explosion, caught fire.

Scores of persons who came for sightseeing during the fire were the injured victims recorded. Although the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Delta Police Command, DSP Bright Edafe, said only one person was injured, the number was higher and were those who came near the fire to feed their curiosity and do videos.

Two respondents, Precious, a nurse, and Victory, an admission seeker, who had a feel of the explosions a distance away from the scene narrated their experiences thus: “I was at the shop at Okolaba by 9:30p.m, then I saw smoke from afar. I decided to lock up my pharmacy shop, and move closer to observe what was happening. I went to the junction of my street, on getting there I discovered it was a gas plant that was burning, so I was still standing there, not up to three minutes, the fire exploded to the very point I was standing, that was it o, we all had to run for our lives.”

Victory, on her part, said “we were standing at our compound when we saw the fire, so we thought it was our transformer that was burning. We went inside and came out, we saw the fire increasing and that was when we heard that it was the gas plant that was burning. So we started running to go and take a look at it, we were looking from our junction for like 30 minutes and suddenly something exploded from the fire and spiralled to the sky and everyone started running.

“Many sustained injuries but I and my sister had none. When we got home, the fire was already going down, we thought they had already called fire fighters, but they weren’t there on time. The fire started raging again  until the fire fighters came put if out.”

Meanwhile, our correspondent gathered that the owner of the gas station had earlier closed shop for some months, did some renovations and later resumed business last December. Described as a good man, he was said to have championed the downward review of the cost of cooking gas by selling a kilogram for N700 before others followed suit.



Reach the right people at the right time with Nationnewslead. Try and advertise any kind of your business to users online today. Kindly contact us for your advert or publication @ Call or Whatsapp: 08168544205, 07055577376, 09122592273

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *