Hours after an accident on Mumbai’s Bandra Worli Sea Link killed five people and injured several others early on Wednesday, the police said that a series of events led to the fatal crash.
According to the police, at around 2:40 am, the tyre of a Swift car travelling in the south-bound direction of the sea link burst. “The front tyre on the left side suddenly burst due to which the driver of that vehicle lost control and hit the railing on the sea link,” a police officer said.
One of the guards posted on the sea link, identified as Rajendra Singh, informed the toll plaza about the accident. A six-member team comprising toll plaza employees Chetan Kadam, Gajraj Singh, Satendra Singh and Hemant Toraskar, ambulance driver Somnath Salve, and Krishna Yadav, the driver of the towing vehicle, left for the spot.
“Soon after we received information, as per protocol a team of six along with an ambulance and towing vehicle was sent to the spot. It was to clear the traffic,” K Chauhan, a toll plaza employee, said. With these many employees being dispatched to the spot, officials at the toll plaza said that they did not check further.
The Worli police said that the drivers of the towing van and the ambulance parked their respective vehicles ahead of the Swift, following which they went back to help the injured. “Subsequently, two vehicles, a Baleno and a Mercedes, stopped ahead of these vehicles to help them,” said a senior police officer. “Two doctors working in the defence were travelling in a Mercedes; they believed that someone had gotten injured due to which they stopped,” the officer added.
Minutes later, a speeding Creta, an SUV, dashed the Swift car from behind. “The impact was so huge that it went and rammed into the ambulance, which hit the vehicles that were parked ahead of it,” said a police officer.
The police control room was then informed.
“A few minutes later, a large number of ambulances and police vans started going to the spot. We believed that some VIP must have been a victim but later we came to know that our people have died,” said Chauhan.
While Kadam, Gajraj, Satendra, Salve and Rajendra succumbed to injuries, Toraskar and Yadav are still in hospital, the police added.