As part of efforts to ensure free flow of traffic throughout the four-day closure of the Third Mainland Bridge for investigative maintenance test, the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) has deployed a total of 650 officials to all routes along the corridor.
Addressing the specially-assembled traffic officers on Thursday, LASTMA General Manager, Olawale Musa, said in view of the strategic importance of the bridge to the economy of Lagos and Nigeria in general, the operation to control traffic during the closure would be treated as a major national assignment and a call to service.
According to him, the agency was not oblivious of the volume of traffic on the bridge on hourly and daily basis, and the consequences of diverting such huge traffic on the alternative routes during the period, hence the need to seek the cooperation of members of the public.
He said: “As a professional agency with requisite personnel and experience, I want to assure Lagosians that we would do everything to make sure that motorists and commuters are not subjected to any discomfort during the exercise.
“Our traffic officers have been adequately mandated to make sacrifices, demonstrate discipline and professionalism on all the alternative routes during the period of the closure of the Third Mainland Bridge.
“As officers of this agency, you must be passionate and show compassion to motorists, especially those who are not familiar with the alternative routes and other roads in the metropolis,” Mr Musa charged those deployed.
While urging motorists and commuters to be patient and cooperative to ensure free flow of traffic on all alternative routes during the closure, the LASTMA boss said it was important for the public to strictly adhere to traffic rules and directives to ensure hitch-free exercise in the overall interest of all stakeholders.
“Already, we have mobilised 650 personnel with enough materials and other logistics to ensure free flow of traffic around the period. What we want from the public is strict adherence to traffic rules.
“Specifically, I like to plead with motorists to exercise patience on alternative routes and comply with traffic laws and directives of traffic officials,” Musa said.
He added that the provost and surveillance teams of the agency have been alerted and directed to monitor individual conduct and performance of LASTMA officials on the concerned roads, just as he warned motorists that relevant laws would be fully enforced by the Agency to forestall impunity, chaos and disorderliness in order to ensure security and safety of all road users in the state.
He, however, advised motorists without urgent need to move to and fro the Island to avoid the alternative routes in view of the attendant traffic gridlock being anticipated.