By Olakunle Olafioye
After months of respite from perennial gridlocks along major roads in Lagos state, motorists and commuters are once again beginning to express their frustration as traffic snarls resurface on major roads in the state.
Similarly, residents in parts of Lagos Island reportedly fled their homes while vehicular and human movements were hampered as floods took over some major areas on the Island yesterday.
Checks by Sunday Sun indicated that major roads in the state have been witnessing traffic congestions resulting in motorists spending longer time getting to their destinations since the beginning of last week.
On Friday, July 7, most Lagosians returning home from their various workplaces had difficult time getting home as traffic gridlock crippled vehicular movement along major roads in the state.
A cab driver, Rasaq Fadahunsi, told Sunday Sun that he left Ajah area of the state some minutes past 4pm on Friday but didn’t get to his house in Alagbado area of the state until few minutes past 11pm.
Similarly, another resident who simply identified herself as Mrs. Ajayi said the journey between her house in Egbeda and Oshodi where she owns a shop now takes longer time as a result of traffic jam.
“On a normal day I spend between one and one and a half hour to get back home from my shop in Oshodi. But this has changed now because in the last few days I have discovered that it now takes me an average of about two to three hours to get back home,” she said.
Sunday Sun monitored the situation and reports that the rain has also affected some portions along major roads as potholes now dot them.
At Barliette Bus stop along the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway, Sunday Sun observed long stretch of traffic which motorists attributed to a recently developed gully along the road.
Road users plying the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway yesterday appealed to traffic authorities in the state to increase their presence between Abule-Egba axis of the road and Oshodi to be able to curb the excesses of impatient motorists who hide under the ongoing construction works to flout traffic regulations.
Reacting to the development, the Public Relations Officer, Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, Mr. Mahmud Hassan, denied the report that traffic jams had returned to Lagos roads.
He attributed the traffic build up noticed in the state to the rains, which according to him slow down traffic and reduces visibility for motorists.
“I do not agree with you totally that there is a return of traffic build up to Lagos roads. We are in the rainy season now and definitely when it rains it will affect the flow of traffic; motorists will not be able to move at the normal speed because the weather will be hazy and for safety reason they have to reduce the speed at which they move.
“Secondly, if there is little flood on the road it will hamper the free flow of traffic but immediately the flood subsides normalcy will return to the road.
‘‘If you are very observant, you will notice that LASTMA has been able to reduce travel time on Lagos roads because we have our men on the road for almost 20 hours daily,” Mahmud said.
In a related development, flood yesterday took over some major areas in the state making both vehicular and human movements difficult. Mostly affected are some high brow areas in Lekki where some residents were reported to have fled their homes.
The flood also reportedly caused serious gridlock around Ikoyi leading to the temporary shutdown of some major roads in the area.