By Ikwen Atuaka
A fuel station in Obudu has been reportedly razed to the ground with the Fire Service reportedly not taking action despite being located less than a minute drive away.
The outbreak according to eyewitness accounts began in the early hours of Sunday when a tanker was discharging petroleum products into the underground tanks.
“The fire started gradually from the fuel metres, and grew stronger as they tried to put it off. It got bigger and we had to flee the station for fear of getting burnt” one of the witnesses says.
The fire which burned for over eight hours registered no casualties with onlookers sympathising with the owner, one Mike Abu whom unconfirmed information say, suffered a similar fate about two years ago when his fuel station at Indiabeb village along Ogoja road was razed to the ground by fire also.
The said Mr. Abu was visibly in tears with sympathisers also tongue lashing the Cross River Fire Service, Obudu division for its failure to respond to the situation despite their office being located a minute drive away from the station which is adjacent the Obudu council secretariat and opposite the Obudu Divisional Headquarters of the Nigeria Police along ranch road.
Concerns were also raised about the location of fuel stations in the council area with one onlooker who gave her name as Mary, urging the government to look into the location of fuel stations citing an example of a new station which has being built opposite a drinking joint and a gas welding mechanic shop located behind the new motor park.
Furthermore, she opined that; “if this same fire outbreak comes, though we don’t pray for it, but if it comes to such a station, the whole town will be at risk” She said. “Even the road leading there is too small how will tankers come to refill?” She queried.
Sources at the Fire Service office who spoke to our reporter under anonymity told CrossRiverWatch that they have no functional equipment in the office to fight any form of fire.
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