In Abia, a container accident leads to the tragic death of four individuals.

Busy Bee
Busy Bee November 14, 2023
Updated 2023/11/14 at 10:25 PM

On Tuesday, a tragic accident occurred on the Aba River Bridge in Ogbor-Hill, Aba, resulting in the loss of four lives. The incident involved a trailer carrying a 40-foot container, which, due to brake failure while descending from Ogbor-Hill, collided with two vehicles at the summit of the bridge.

This unfortunate event comes after a similar incident had prompted the relocation of the abattoir in the Ahia-Udele area, known for its proximity to the Aba River. Notably, this is the first accident to occur since the market’s relocation.

According to an eyewitness, the trailer, descending from Opobo-Junction along Aba Ikot-Ekepe Highway, experienced uncontrollable swerving. In an attempt to avoid colliding with another malfunctioning trailer on the bridge, it ultimately crashed into a Siena car and another stationary vehicle, resulting in casualties and injuries.

Attempts to contact the Federal Road Safety Commission at the accident scene proved futile as they swiftly withdrew when public anger in Aba intensified due to their failure to provide a crane for lifting the container to rescue those trapped underneath.

It was reported that three hours after the accident, there was no towing van or crane available at the accident scene to remove the container.

An eyewitness, Mr. Ikenna Nzekwe, expressed surprise that both the Abia State Government and the Federal Government had not considered constructing a flyover across the bridge to ease traffic congestion from Uyo, Ikot-Ekepe into the commercial city of Aba.

Nzekwe stated, “We need a permanent solution to the recurring accidents on this bridge. This incident happened two years ago, three years ago, and even before the market was relocated. Isn’t it obvious that this hill is too dangerous for a straight road?

How can we continue to allow our people to die like this? When will the government understand that these heavy-duty vehicles shouldn’t be on the road during the daytime? When will government agencies learn to remove broken-down vehicles on the road to save lives? These are the issues we should be focusing on.”

Another eyewitness, Anayo Ihueze, remarked, “This is a preventable accident, but see how it went. There’s no single rescue effort. All those rescued were pulled out by concerned Aba residents who came together to save lives. I was part of the citizens that rescued three parents here today, one with her legs completely damaged, one seriously injured, and the other unhurt. In all these, we only saw the Fire Service, who didn’t have much of a role. The soldiers and police seem more interested in security, maintaining law and order, and securing goods inside the container. The FRSC came with nothing except their Hilux. What kind of a country is this?”

Meanwhile, while some residents were rescuing trapped individuals, some hoodlums attempted to steal some of the second-hand imported clothes inside the container but were confronted by courageous residents who resisted and intercepted them.

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