There were tragic scenes at the Mile One area of Port Harcourt this week when a train hit a middle-aged woman selling roast plantain and fish beside a rail line.
The incident happened after the demolition of structures along the rail line by Governor Nyesom Wike’s administration.
An eyewitness, identified simply as Emeka, said the woman, whose table had earlier been destroyed by street urchins, had just repaired it before she was killed.
“When I rushed there, I saw blood on the ground; some people had to rush her to a nearby hospital. With the amount of blood I saw, she could not have made it,” Emeka stated.
Another eyewitness, Chidi, told Punch that the woman’s legs were crushed when she was found.
“I don’t think she died. My friend said she was critically injured. Her legs were shattered,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Public Relations Officer of the Nigerian Railway Corporation, Port Harcourt Station, Mr. Samuel Atoyebi, said he had no knowledge of the incident.
“The management and my office have not received any accident report from the train driver and his crew. So, we have not heard of such incident at Mile One flyover.
“We also use this opportunity to warn traders and motorists to be cautious when close to the rail tracks. Traders and motorists should be cautious of what they are doing around rail tracks. Even worn-out shoes can cause one to slip and fall on the rail tracks.”
Atoyebi added that despite warnings from the corporation, some mechanics still repair vehicles and abandon scraps on rail lines, which he said could cause damage to train coaches.