More than 35 passengers had a narrow escape when a private bus travelling to Chennai from Bangalore caught fire during the early hours of Thursday. Identified as a sleeper bus owned by Sharma Travels, the fire broke out from the engine, which was pointed out by drivers of other vehicles plying on the same road. The mishap was avoided after the driver stopped the bus immediately and evacuated all passengers.
According to the police, the incident took place at Shoolagiri (a village in Krishnagiri district of Tamil Nadu) around 4 am on Thursday (May 9) as the bus was on its way from Bangalore to Chennai on National Highway 44. The same was reported to the fire station at Hosur but the bus was burnt in the span of a few minutes before firefighters arrived at the spot. No casualties have been recorded during the untoward incident.
The initial investigation is underway and a case has been registered at Shoolagiri police station. A short circuit in the engine is believed to be the cause of the fire. However, an alternate bus was arranged to help all passengers on board reach their destination even though most of their luggage were eaten up by the flames.
It can be recalled that a similar incident took place in August 2018 along KR Puram flyover in the city. The multi-axle KSRTC bus then had 20 passengers on board and the alertness of the driver who noticed smoke emitting from the engine through the rearview mirror helped avoid a mishap.