No fewer than four lives were lost in Oja Oba market, Ibadan, Tuesday morning, when the driver of an articulated truck, with registered number AGL 883 XQ, lost control, crushing some vehicles and the victims in the process.
Several people were said to have sustained varying degrees of injuries in the accident, with some of them described by eyewitnesses as life changing injuries.
A yet-to-be-identified woman and her two children were crushed to death in the accident, which occurred around 8am as traders at the popular market were opening shops while many others were waiting along the Oja Oba/Molete road to board vehicles to their various places of occupational engagement.
The Oyo State Police Public Relations Officer, Adekunle Ajisebutu, who confirmed the incident, said the driver of the vehicle had been arrested and that investigation had begun.
Most of the affected persons were operators of commercial tricycles that had converted a part of the Mapo-Molete dual carriage way road to their garage, as well as some of their passengers. About four of the tricycles were mangled by the impact of the collision with one of them badly burnt by ensuing fire.
According to sources, one of those killed was an engineer with the Ibadan Properties, Mr. Monsur Ajedayo, who was caught up in the disaster as he was awaiting a taxi by the roadside.
His body and that of others, who died in the accident, were said to have been deposited at the Adeoyo State Hospital morgue, while the injured persons are receiving treatment at the hospital and the University College Hospital, Ibadan.
A relative of Ajedayo, who did not give his name, said his late cousin had alighted from the car of one of his bosses in office and was waiting for a taxi when he met his untimely death.
“The boss was going somewhere so he dropped him at Mapo. He walked down to Oja Oba to take a taxi when he was crushed by the truck,” he said.
Eyewitnesses told our correspondent that the articulated vehicle ran into a taxi with number plate GGE 235 DR and at least five commercial tricycles, killing and injuring some of the occupants.
One of those who witness the early morning disaster, Fola Omidiran, said she escaped being crushed by the truck by a whisker, while also attributing the accident to brake failure.
She said, “The truck skidded off the road suddenly as it descended the slope, killing a woman and her two children immediately. It also injured many others. From what we heard, the articulated truck had a brake failure.
A tricycle operator, Yanis Lukman, said more people would have died if the market had opened fully.
At the Mapo Police Station, where the vehicles involved were taken to, relatives of the victims were seen wailing while a relative was making effort to secure papers for the release of Ajedayo’s body from the morgue.
The state PPRO, Ajisebutu said, “The accident is under investigation. The offending driver has been arrested and is in police custody. Four victims died as a result of the accident. Their bodies have been deposited at the Adeoyo State Hospital morgue. Three victims were injured and have been taken to the same hospital and UCH for medical treatment.”