A flooding advisory being circulated online claims that the water level at the third mainland bridge is almost filled to the brim.
On 23rd October, a blurry graphic design, containing an incident alert was purportedly released by Eons intelligence, a risk consulting and intelligence gathering organisation.
Eons is well-known for publishing timely security and safety updates to Nigerians via its official website and social media pages.
“There is a high risk of a possible overflow of the Lagos Lagoon which might subsequently submerged (sic) the whole Island axis of Lagos State,” the content reads.
“Current survey analysis indicates that the 3rd Mainland bridge is almost filled to the brim.”
The notice advised individuals residing in the axis “to prepare and limit movement for quick response’, adding that they “maintain situational awareness”.
TheCable contacted Eons Intelligence to confirm if the incident alert was published by the outfit, but no response has been received at the time this report was filed.
Also, a video has been circulating on social media claiming that the water level at the third mainland bridge has increased tremendously.
On October 24, Kate Henshaw, a popular Nollywood actress posted a video on Twitter, shot from a moving car, suggesting that the water level beneath the popular Lagos bridge has suddenly increased.
“Who has passed through Eko Bridge this morning…? Just received this…. The water level is quite high up…. can anyone conform??” she asked in the video’s caption.
Another Nigerian actor, Williams Uchemba, posted a video he shot while in a moving car on the Third Mainland Bridge. Uchemba’s video buttressed the one shared by Kate Henshaw.
“Yea 3rd mainland lagoon is high or is it my eyes??” he asked in the caption.
“The Lagos State government said the flood is coming. This is not to scare you but get you informed and ready for anything esp if it’s coming to your side��. Stay safe,” he added.
A Facebook user, also shared pictures alongside a caption, claiming that the “water level has risen really high, almost touching the bridge”
Checks by TheCable revealed that the first picture shared in the Facebook post has been on the internet far back as July 2020. In fact, a careful look at the same picture clearly shows the water level is just at the pile cap of the bridge.
Response from the Lagos state government
Nigeria is currently experiencing the worst flood in decades, which has affected over two million citizens and is responsible for over 600 deaths.
On October 24, the Lagos state government, via its official Facebook page, issued a statement, warning waterfront residents of highbrow areas including Ikoyi, Lekki, Victoria Island, and coastal areas of Epe and Badagry.
Tunji Bello, the state commissioner for the environment and water resources warned residents in the mentioned axis to be “wary of backflow, due to the high tide in the Lagos Lagoon”.
“The high tide of the Lagoon has made it difficult for storm run-off from the various channels to discharge effectively into the lagoon which may cause a stagnation into the streets and major roads until the level of the lagoon subsides to allow for a discharge of the channels,” he said.
High water level under Third Mainland Bridge
In response to the videos claiming that the water level at the Third Mainland Bridge is almost filled to the brim, Bello “described the trending video as fake news”.
He added that the video only captures the “Oworonshoki end of the Third Mainland Bridge which is normal because the area is a deck-on pile”.
He further advised social media users “against posting panicky messages to residents in order to create unnecessary anxiety amongst the public”.
In a report published on October 26, by the BBC Pidgin, the claim that the water level at the Third Mainland Bridge has risen to the brim was refuted with adequate pictorial evidence.
The BBC report contains a recent picture showing the pile cap of the bridge.
The picture, taken on October 26 at about 10 am, shows that the water level is just at the pile cap of the bridge and is yet to go above it, let alone rise close to the height of the superstructure, which precedes the bridge.
The claim that the present water level at the Third Mainland Bridge has risen to the brim is false.
This fact check was produced by TheCable with support from Code for Africa’s PesaCheck, International Fact-Checking Network, and African Fact Checking Alliance network.