(By Dotun Onimole)
Barely a day after environmentalists and the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) warned about the ongoing ocean surge in the coastal area of Lagos State, a teenager was swept away in the surge during the weekend.
NEMA had last Thursday warned members of the public to desist from going to beaches such as Kuramo, Oniru and Bar Beach due to the turbulence of the ocean.
The teenager, whose identity has not been ascertained, was said to have been swept away by the tumultuous waves when he went to the Bar Beach for a swim.
Rescue efforts were truncated as the ocean swept the teenager beyond the reach of picnickers while the turbulence of the waves overpowered the rescuers.
Confirming the incident, the Public Relations Officer, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), South-west zone, Mr. Ibrahim Farinloye, said they were on the lookout for the body, adding that they were hopeful the body would surface today or thereafter.
He said: “We are yet to ascertain the identity of the boy but as expected, it takes three days for a drowned body to come afloat. So we are still on the lookout for the body.”
Farinloye, while speaking to newsmen earlier, had restated the warning that fun seekers and members of the public should stay off the path of the surge.
“We didn’t initially want to raise the alarm and cause panic but do a deeper analysis of the surge with a group of experts from different agencies but at the rate it is going, people should keep off first.”
“Although the surge does not mean people should not visit the beach, they should not venture into the water. Meanwhile, we are consulting with experts and stakeholders on the next line of action to take,” he added.