With just one fire truck serving the entire Imo State, it was a surprise that fire-fighters were able to put out the fire that engulfed a section of the Sam Mbakwe Airport in Owerri, the state capital.
The fire is a subject of investigation, but passengers suggested it might have been caused by an electrical fault.
This was confirmed by the Director of the State Fire Service, Mr Japheth Okoroafor, who lamented the lack of equipment for fire fighting..
His words: “We have only one fire truck servicing the entire state; this operation would have been more successful if we had the necessary equipment.
“We want to use this opportunity to call on the government to equip us as we are in serious need of upgrading because such incidents can happen at any time”.
Panic-stricken passengers and staff of the airport ran helter-skelter in the aftrenoon blaze as fire-fighter put out the inferno.
Okoroafor said that the VIP lounge was badly damaged before the fire could be controlled.
General Manager, Corporate Affairs, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Mrs Henrietta Yakubu, disclosed that the fire started at about 2.00p.m but was put under control for mormalcy to be restored.
She said, “There was no casualty and normal operations has since resumed at the airport.
“The authority has commenced preliminary investigations into the cause of the incident”.