Docked Oil Tanker Explodes off Nigeria

By MarEx 2011-11-22 09:49:18

A huge explosion panicked the citizens of Lagos Island off Nigeria last night after a docked oil tanker undergoing repairs caught fire and exploded. 

The vessel has been identified as the MT Britaina-U which berthed at the Lagos marina on Monday. An eyewitness told Vanguard News that the vessel is reportedly owned by a retired police officer and that the MT Britaina-U exploded following a gas leak in one of the ship’s compartments as it was undergoing repairs.  The explosion sparked chaos, sending nearby people and motorists running for safety. 

Initial unconfirmed reports say that 2 people are feared dead from the blast, and that several others are seriously injured.  However, a Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) said that there was one casualty, no mortality, and that the affected victim is responding to treatment.

The Lagos government told PM News Nigeria that LASEMA and other rescue agencies were dispatched to the scene of the MT Britaina-U and took firm control of the situation.  They insisted that there was no reason for the public to panic about potential gas emissions from the vessel, and that it has been brought under control. 

CEO of LASEMA says that investigations are currently being conducted.