Heavy rains on Wednesday led to a nightmarish traffic congestion on Lagos-Badagry expressway, leaving hundreds stranded. But could this be the first of many? See details here!
1. Lagos-Badagry locked in heavy rainfall
The dry season is gradually passing away and the raining season is quietly approaching across the country. The rainfall may cool the heat and encourage crop production for farmers but driving in the rain is one of the worst nightmares for many Nigerian motorists. One of the worst experiences road users periodically go through when the rains come is traffic congestion as a result of over-flooded roads.
On Thursday, motorists and pedestrians suffered a traffic jam of alarming proportions along Lagos-Badagry expressway after the heavy shower on Wednesday night. Many travelers who were heading to different locations were stuck for several hours on the road. Cars were seen head to head with each other as frustrated car owners struggled to find their way out of the traffic quagmire. Alas, it appeared that these efforts only exacerbated the situation.
The rains compounded the problems of a bad road and ongoing construction
>>> The rainy season is coming, check here How to drive through flooded roads in Nigeria!
2. What cause Lagos traffic gridlocks whenever it rains?
Lagos state has the highest population in Nigeria and legendary traffic snarl-ups with or even without the rainfall. However, when it rains, some streets and roads become navigation-proof in Lagos, as was the recent case of the Lagos-Badagry expressway. There are many factors leading to this scenario, like Naijauto has once analyzed in Reasons why Lagos traffic is chaotic when it rains, but we just brief some main points below!
Nigeria roads tend to be in less than perfect condition because adequate maintenance is usually lacking. Potholes are left untended till they become massive craters causing cars to lose control when driving over them. Along the Lagos-Badagry expressway where the traffic jam took place, there are portions of the road that are really out of shape. This contributed to cars being stuck for several hours.
Poor drainage and poor construction
Quite a few roads are constructed without proper planning and drainage. This causes flooding on the road after downpours leading to heavy traffic. In cases where drainage is provided, many road users and residents have resorted to emptying their trash bins into this drainage causing blockage. The Lagos state government embarks on periodic exercises to unclog blocked drainage systems and canals, but it’s still far from solved.
During a heavy pour, commuters who do not want to drive through the rainfall usually wait till the rain stops before they continue their journeys. After the rainfall, the rush hour begins, as everyone struggles to reach their destinations quickly. This lack of patience is perhaps the biggest cause of traffic gridlocks.
Lack of organized road construction
The ongoing construction of the Lagos-Badagry expressway may also have contribute to the bad traffic situation. This is because a proper alternative route or plan to detour around the construction site was not provided.
The current road construction efforts on the Lagos-Badagry expressway also impacts on the traffic situation
As the rains increase in frequency and severity, more traffic jams are expected in Lagos and elsewhere in the country if these factors above are not addressed.
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