In a bid to ensure safety on the waters, especially during this rainy season, the Ikorodu branch of Association of Tourist Operators and Water Transport of Nigeria (ATBOWTON) has concluded plans to organise a safety programme for its members.
The General Secretary of Ikorodu branch of the association, Mr. Daniel Ezeh, who disclosed this in a chat with Shipping Position Daily in Lagos last week, also said that the body has been trying its best to ensure safety on the waters through its monthly meetings.
He also said that ATBOWTON ensures that proper information is given to its members when they feel the water is not conducive to navigate.
He said for instance, "today (Tuesday) when we observe that the weather is not good, we asked the boats operators not to go anywhere. They will not navigate until we get clearance that the weather is better. You ensure that you get clearance that the weather is favourable for you to navigate. Remember you are carrying passengers"
“We asked them to hold on until the safety manager gives them clearance to take the passengers to their destination".
Also speaking on the issue of educating the association’s members on the rules and regulations guiding boat operating, he assured that the association is doing everything possible to ensure that members are properly trained to understand the rules and regulations of the profession.
He also said that the association invited safety professionals to come and educate the members on the need for compliance to laws.
Mr. Ezeh also expressed happiness that the members are complying with the teaching.
"That is the area you need to make them understand. After all, people that didn't go to school drive cars on the roads. But when it comes to understanding the rules and signs on the roads; that is when you can now use either your local language or Pidgin English to communicate to him to the level that he will understand, that it is not just to start a vehicle and you will say you are driving. You have to equally obey the signs and follow the rules and regulations on the roads. So we are doing that. We do training, we bring safety officers from the marshal to come and educate them. To make them understand the navigation rules. There is a high level of complaint to that from our members", he explained.