A 30ton delivery has just been successfully concluded in Kaduna after two grueling days on the road from Lagos. Now, it’s about time for the return journey; rig is pretty light and you were eagerly looking forward to deadheading back to Lagos. Give or take, you have estimated you will be back in Lagos by evening time the next day.
Time now was around 5pm and you were cruising at an average speed of 60km/hr on the Mokira-mokwa road just outside of Kotangora in Niger State. The road ahead was pretty empty and a peep at your rear view mirror revealed no car or truck was following. So you relaxed; it was indeed going to be a pretty cool drive back to base. You saw ahead of you a slight bend which based on your experience simply lead further down the long smooth road. You approached the slight curve cutting your speed to around 50km/hr. Just as you were reaching out to engage gear and notch your speed back to 60km/hr, you raised your gaze to the road to behold what would probably qualify as your worst nightmare! Right there in the middle of the road just after the bend are herds of cattle numbering between 20 and 30 calmly migrating towards the other side of the road. In their midst were about 3-4 cattlemen.
You were caught in between running through the cattle, killing some and probably one or two herdsmen and cutting into the ditch to the left side of the road and most likely putting your own life and the safety of the truck at great risk. It was a double-whammy and a decision has to be taken-very fast. The best part of you gave in and rather than knocking out a couple of cattle and some herdsmen, you decided to take your chances by detouring into the ditch. The truck sped rough-shod through some undergrowth and slammed into a deep gully by the side of the road. It flipped over and rested on its side in the ditch.
Help immediately came from the herdsmen and village close by. You got out of the accident with slight bruises and was assisted to the police post in the village where you made a report. The herdsmen and a couple of the village vigilante, in appreciation of your heroic gamble volunteered to watch over the truck for as long as it takes you to get medical treatment and make arrangement for towing vehicle to remove the badly damaged truck. Nearest location for crane availability is about 120km away. So it took 4days, a deployment of rescue team from Lagos and about N220,000.00 in cost to salvage the situation.
That was a day never to be forgotten! Now, you drive 25km/hr anytime you are on that road busy or not!