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Lagos promises improved safety measures for residents

By

Sesan Olufowobi

The Lagos State Government says it will continue to make the safety of Lagosians its priority and will never abandon them to any fate that befalls them.

The government also reiterated its commitment to the well-being of its workforce to get the best out of them.

The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Special Duties and Inter-governmental Relations, Dr. Ibironke Sodeinde, said this on Friday during her visit to the victims of the Owode-Onirin Scrap Market cylinder explosion receiving treatment at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja.

Sodeinde, who was accompanied by the Director, Lagos State Fire Service, Mr. Rasak Fadipe, said the government would pay the medical bills incurred in the course of the victims’ treatment as a demonstration of its commitment to their well-being.

“This, we believe, will cushion the financial hardship on their families,” she added.

Sodeinde said the government was not unmindful of the level of exposure of firefighters to risks from fire and other hazards in the line of duty.

She said, “Firefighters are essential to public safety; they engage in putting out fires and pulling people from burning cars, buildings and other dangerous situations. To this end, the government has insured them, improved their welfare packages and equipped their facilities to reduce their vulnerability to dangers.”

The victims, who were 11 in number, were rushed to the hospital as a result of direct exposure to suspected ammonia gas discharged from busted abandoned cylinders, causing the firefighters and the traders to be unconscious.

The fire, which escalated from burning of heap of refuse by a resident resulted in the explosion of the cylinders which led to the release of the toxic substance.

The director of the fire service said firefighters were unsung heroes, who risked their lives under the sun and in the rain to ensure that lives and property were protected.

He said seven victims had been discharged, while the remaining were in stable condition and responding to treatment.

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