By Benjamin Omoike
In a bid to end the spate of boat mishaps in Lagos, the Lagos State Waterways Authority, LASWA, has impounded no fewer than six boats for flouting safety regulations on the waterways.
LASWA said that the impounded boats were discovered conveying above the number of prescribed passengers, thereby resulting in overloading of the vessels. Also, passengers on board the boats, it was discovered, did not have their life jackets on.
Confirming the matter, LASWA General Manager, Oluwadamilola Emmanuel, stated that the boats were discovered during a safety enforcement exercise, geared toward prevention of boat mishap on Lagos waterways.
Emmanuel disclosed that the boats were impounded during a safety compliance operation to Mile 2 and Abule Osun Jetties in Amuwo-Odofin Local Government, Kirirkiri; Ajeromi-Ifelodun council, Alex Jetty, Liverpool Jetty in Apapa and Ebute Ojo, in Ojo Local Government Area.
According to him, the boats were caught flouting safety regulations on the waterways and their offences include; not wearing of life jackets, overloading, reckless riding, among other offences, which could have resulted in fatalities in the case of an accident on the waterways.
While assuring residents of Lagos that LASWA would no longer condone any action that goes against the state safety standards, Emmanuel stressed that any erring operator would be sanctioned appropriately and promptly.
The assurance came days after over 10 persons perished on the waterways, when the ill-fated boat conveying them to Badagry capsized.