The commercial boat identified as HMS 1 was said to have capsized at 9.55 am with all the persons on board. It was gathered that 27 persons were rescued alive by local divers while the dead body of one of the passengers was recovered at noon.
The General Manager of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), Mr Michael Akindele, who confirmed the incident, said preliminary investigation by the response team revealed that the boat took off from Ikorodu en route Victoria Island.
He added that the boat which was supposed to convey 21 passengers, carried 28 instead, and that the driver was on high speed when the boat collided with some submerged log of wood, resulting in the mishap. He said:
“27 passengers were rescued from the incident, but unfortunately one passenger was confirmed dead at the scene of the incident. Investigation reveals that all passengers were wearing life jackets.”
He however, warn operators to avoid over-speeding and to always comply with safety regulations on the water ways to avoid loss of lives. He said proper investigation would be conducted on the incident.
However, LASWA and NIWA have issued out new guidelines and standards to boat operators in Lagos aimed at sanitizing and improving the water-ways including a minimum double hull standard, among others.
He also said the state government will continue to intensify efforts to speed up the implementation of the new reforms in the water-ways sector so as to prevent any unfortunate future occurrences.