A DAY after a speeding bus collided with two vehicles on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway killing 17 people, the Panvel police plan to arrest the driver of the Swift. The police had registered a case of causing death due to negligence against the bus driver who died on Sunday.
Following an investigation however, the police found that the driver of the Swift, parked on the expressway after a tyre burst, was also at fault as he did not have the signalling lights switched on, something that would have alerted the oncoming bus driver.
Deputy Commissioner of Police, Navi Mumbai, Vishwas Pandhre said, “We will be arresting the driver of the Swift based on the result of our probe.” He added that while the driver of the bus was indeed at fault for driving at a high speed, the car driver too was at fault.
“The incident took place around 4.30 am when it was pitch dark. It would have been difficult for the driver to spot the stationary car without the signalling lights switched on. Hence, there is negligence on the part of the driver as well,” Pandhre added.
While the Swift halted after the tyre burst, a group of youngsters which was driving back to Mumbai from Lonavla in an Innova spotted the parked Swift near Shivkar village in Panvel. Innova driver Ashish Patil said after seeing that there were women and children in the Swift, he stopped the car nearly 100 metre ahead of the Swift, and came to help its occupants.
The Swift driver then told them that they had a flat tyre following which Patil and his friends started changing the tyre. It was at this point that the speeding bus came from behind and rammed into the Swift, the Innova and then plunged off the road.
Ashish said, “There was negligence on the part of both the drivers of the bus and the Swift. The first thing I did after getting off our car was to ask them why they did not have the signalling lights on as it was dark. They told me that the lights were not working. I then asked them to switch on the indicators, which too were not working. They told me that since they just used the car locally, they did not think too much of the lights not being operational.”
Meanwhile, of the 43 people injured in the accident many were discharged from the MGM Hospital, Kamothe. “With some of them recuperating, 16 are still in the hospital with two still in the ICU,” said Medical Superintendent Dr (Lt Gen) K R Salgotra, MGM Hospital on Monday.
Sub-Divisional Magistrate Bharaj Shidole said the patients were not charged anything for their treatment.
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