The Lagos State government recently revealed that it has obtained over 5,000 drones to monitor the waterways as well as search and rescue operations in a bid to protect the lives and property of its passengers.
With a daily movement of about 70,000 passengers on waterways and a monthly movement of about 1.5 million according to Dr Femi Oke-Osanyintolu — director-general of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) — travelling by water seems to be one of the fastest and easiest ways to get to one’s destination in time.
As said in a report, the drones are already being connected to the state Command Control Centre with Close Circuit Television Camera (CCTV) and mobile CCTV equipment to increase security.
This was made known at the inauguration of Marine Rescue Units in four Jetties which are situated in Lekki, Ijegun-Egba, Ikorodu and Ilaje-Bariga of the state by Oke-Osanyintolu.
As claimed by the director-general, the procurement of the drones is to ensure the safety of lives in case of emergency on the Lagos waterways. He further said that heavy and light equipment has been purchased and distributed to the units while jet skis, ambulance boats, rescue boats, drones for surveillance, search and rescue operations would be put in place for more effectiveness.
In June, July, and August 2019, three boats reportedly capsized. A report says that in one of the accidents about 10 people were missing while three people survived the boat mishap. If eventually deployed, this new development may be helpful in curbing similar boat disasters on the waterways.