There was panic in Badagry area of Lagos on Monday when an Iroko tree burst into flames and continued to burn for more than eight hours on its own.
The incident happened in Topo Garage in the early hours of today and all efforts to put out the fire did not yield much result.
Rather, the fire became more massive as officials of the State Fire Service battled to quell the inferno which was said to have started from the stem of the tree.
However, the fire did not spread to the root and the apex of the tree at the initial stages while the leaves remained green and fresh.
But when fire fighters mobilized from the Badagry Fire Station decided to apply water, the fire started spreading to the top of the tree. The fire fighters were therefore advised to stop applying the water after almost consuming all the two trucks brought to the scene.
Director of the State Fire Service, Mr. Razaq Fadipe who confirmed the incident to our correspondent described the fire as extensive, saying the preoccupation of the service was to evacuate residents living in the compound where the tree is sited.
He disclosed that a branch of the tree later collapsed after burning for almost eight hours, adding however that there was no casualty recorded.
“Initially when it started, we tried to evacuate people in that surrounding. We got them evacuated because we were envisaging that by the time it burns out, it would collapse on the building”, he said.
Further findings by our correspondents revealed that the tree also got burnt in the 70s and 80s which raised fears that there might be a spiritual angle to the inferno which residents and eyewitnesses described as strange.
It was learnt that there are some traditional rites which are usually carried out in the compound where the tree is located.
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