Five traders returning from Ugbo’nla market in the local government area of Ondo State have been killed when their boat capsized, living a survivor who was said to be the only one wearing a life jacket during the trip.
Penpushing reports that the chairperson of Fishermen Association of Nigeria (FAN) in the state, Orioye Gbayisemore, who confirmed the incident, said the incident occurred on Wednesday, as he urged the state government to enforce safety rules on the waterways.
The chairman of the association emphasized that the use of a life jacket would significantly enhance safety and increase the chances of survival during emergencies, and advised the state government needs stringent measures to enforce the rules to make the waterways safe.
“The presence of a life jacket saved the life of the sole survivor in this tragic incident. The lone survivor in the Ugbo Nla boat mishap had the foresight to wear a life jacket before setting out on the ill-fated trip’, Gbayisemore said.
“The life jacket was vital to his survival, keeping him alive until rescue arrived. This serves as a stark reminder of the urgent need to enforce the use of life jackets for all individuals commuting on water’, he added
Penpushing further reports that Gbayisemore in the same vein, urged the state government to dredge and clear the waterways to facilitate safe and unobstructed movement for passengers.
‘It is crucial to recognise that well-maintained waterways enhance ease of transportation and significantly reduce the risk of accidents, ensuring safety and wellbeing of those who rely on water transportation’, he said.
‘Additionally, the government needs to recognise the significance of investing in water transportation. This mode of transportation can contribute to economic growth in the region. The government can promote safe and efficient travel for its citizens by encouraging and supporting investment in water transportation infrastructure. By so doing, the government can prevent future tragedy and create a safer environment for all water commuters’, he stated
Penpushing also reports that it is recalled that 701 persons lost their lives in 53 boat accidents in Nigeria between January 2020 and October 2022, while the fatalities were attributed to overloading, careless driving, poor maintenance of boats and turbulent weather, among others.
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