Following a distress call received from Local Divers at about 3:10 pm today, 12th August, 2015, that a Helicopter plunged into the Lagos Lagoon at Oworonshoki, a team of Policemen and other emergency management agencies swiftly moved to the scene. During the rescue operation, six persons on board the helicopter were rescued alive and taken to the hospital for medical attention and are responding to treatment, while four corpses were recovered.
Initial enquiry revealed that the helicopter belongs to Bristow Helicopters and that twelve(12) persons were said to be on board the ill-fated helicopter.
In another development, there has been a high rate of fire incidents in Lagos State, arising from carelessness and mishandling of petroleum products through black marketeering and mass storage at homes due to perceived scarcity. Yesterday, 13/08/2015 at about 2030hrs, along Maidan Street, by Ajiliti area of Mile 12, a Motorcycle conveying a woman with a gallon of petrol stacked in a polythene bag collided with another Motorcycle. In the process, the content spilled on the road and caught fire. The fire engulfed both motorcycles and four others close by.
The rider, the passenger and two others suffered severe burns and have been admitted at a nearby hospital for treatment. The Command therefore appeals to members of the public to be mindful of how they handle petroleum products, stop mass storage of the product in their homes. Motorists, especially Tanker Drivers are equally admonished to observe traffic rules and speed limits to avoid such occurrences.
Signed DSP Patricia Amadin Police Public Relation Officer Lagos State CommandHow it Crashed :
Tragedy struck around 3.30pm in the Alonge area of Owonroshoki, Lagos, as a Bristow helicopter carrying 10 passengers with two crew members on board, plunged into the lagoon.
It was learnt that four people were killed, while no fewer than six others sustained varying degrees of injury.
The aircraft crashed about five minutes to its scheduled landing time at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos.
The helicopter, with registration number, 5N-BDG-760540, was coming from one of the oil rigs in the country.
It was learnt that many of the victims were working for an oil service firm, which was doing a job for a multinational oil company. The oil workers were coming back to Lagos when the incident occurred. The identities of the victims had yet to be known.
It was gathered that some fishermen, who were operating on the water at the time the incident happened, initiated the rescue mission.
Agencies, including the Accident Investigation Bureau, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, the Lagos State Fire Service, the police, Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, and the National Emergency Management Agency, were seen making efforts to recover the remaining two persons in the water.
The two missing persons had yet to be recovered as of 8.30pm when our correspondent left the area.
A resident of Onabanjo Street, Joshua Oladipupo, said he witnessed the moment the helicopter lost control and plunged into the water.
He said, “This afternoon around 3pm, I saw the chopper struggling to find a safe place to land. Suddenly, it nose-dived and I didn’t see it again. I rushed down to the scene. I saw two survivors swimming out of the lagoon.”
The Chairman of the boat operators group in the area, Alhaji Rasaq Isiaq, said he directed his men to rescue the victims immediately after the crash.
He said, “Initially, the aircraft wanted to land on a two-storey building, but moved forward and crashed inside the lagoon. I called my boys instantly and notified the DPO of the station. We rescued six people alive while four were dead.”
Another eyewitness, Mrs. Funmilola Adebiyi said the security agents arrived in the area about 30 minutes after the incident.The spokesperson for NEMA, Ibrahim Farinloye, said, “The Accident Investigation Bureau will make proper briefing about the incident and other issues after investigation. We have asked the navy to help in the rescue operation.”