An Environmentalist, Mr Godwin Ekong, has called for a stop to the establishment of gas stations in residential areas in Lagos state, saying that the development endangered people’s lives.
Ekong, who is also the Director of Habitat Plus, an environment watch outfit, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Friday.
He said that the establishment of such structures in unauthorised places had become alarming and needed to be checked.
According to him, with the rampant incident of gas explosions that have claimed many lives these days, there is need for prompt regulations to halt the trend.
The environmentalist called on the Lagos State Ministry of Physical Planning and the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) to live up to their calling and save the lives of Nigerians.
“It is becoming a common sight for domestic gas station to be established in densely populated areas, unlike before.
“As if series of gas incidents in the country are fluke, investors still toy with people’s lives by opening such business concerns within residential areas.
“I do not know, exactly, the distance such stations should be from homes for I do not want to say it off hand but considering the volatile nature of the substance, common sense should tell us how best to handle it,’’ Ekong said.
He decried a situation where most of the people converted places approved for them by government to be used as gas stations without recourse to the danger their action posed to residential areas, especially in the case of explosion.
Ekong also advised the relevant government agencies to enforce extant laws or existing ones for proactive regulation, to make the environment human friendly.
In June, a fully-loaded, 33,000-litre fuel tanker exploded on Otedola Bridge on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway and claimed many lives with 67 vehicles burnt.