A family of five was yesterday thrown into mourning following a fire incident that engulfed their house at midnight in Ikeja area of Lagos State. The fire, according to eyewitness, broke out at about 2:00a.m., which killed the victim’s wife, maid and brother-in-law.
Sympathisers and family members were seen yesterday trooping in their large numbers to console the man, who is yet to come over the shock of the incident. Eyewitnesses said the maid and the wife’s brother died as a result of the heavy fumes from the fire, while the wife’s efforts to rescue some important document from the apartment having earlier escaped the inferno, led to her death as she could not come out safely from the building, which has a single pathway.
The cause of the fire on the one-storey building situated at No.1, Alade Close, Ikeja, could not be ascertained as at press time though witnesses said it started from the sitting room in the building.
“When men of the Lagos State Fire Service arrived at the scene, they couldn’t do much as they complained of shortage of water to put off the fire. The husband of the deceased and one of his daughters escaped the fire, but the wife, her brother and maid could not survive it,” an eyewitness disclosed to The Guardian.
A security man guarding the house, who simply introduced himself as Muhammad, said: “It is the sound of the glass from the sitting room where the fire started from that woke me up when the glass has been weakened by the fire. The fire destroyed the two wings of three-bedroom flat. The fire people did not come on time. At the time they came, fire had destroyed everything in sight. The cloud was so thick.”
Men of the Lagos State fire service evacuated the three bodies from the apartment while the building was condoned off.
The Lagos State government had on Monday said properties worth N12.8 billion were lost to fire tragedies, while properties worth N76.9 billion were saved from destruction in 980 fire calls between May 2017 and April 2018. The government also said no fewer than 84 people were lost to the incidents.
The Commissioner for Special Duties and Inter-governmental Relations, Mr. Oluseye Oladejo, stated this at the 2018 Ministerial Press Briefing, adding that out of 1,282 emergency calls received during the period under review, 980 were fire calls.