All five victims in the Bandra Worli Sea Link accident in Mumbai early on Wednesday were trying to save the lives of people involved in another accident on the sea link when a speeding car rammed into them, the police said.
Four toll plaza employees and an ambulance driver were killed in the accident that took place around 2.20 am between pole number 76 and 78 on the southbound stretch of the sea link. The deceased were identified as toll plaza employees Chetan Kadam, 36, Gajraj Singh, 42 and Satendra Singh, 35; an unidentified toll plaza employee; and ambulance driver Somnath Salve, 32.
Kadam, the security supervisor, was also the vice president of the Nationalist Congress Party’s youth wing in Mumbai. According to the police, he went to the spot with the other employees to help the passengers injured in the first accident. Kadam had taken an ambulance with him to rescue the injured.
The victims were engaged in helping the injured when a speeding SUV rammed into the stationary vehicles, killing them and injuring several others.
“My brother was known for saving lives of people who used to come to the sea link to commit suicide,” Kadam’s brother Prasad, who was waiting outside B Y L Nair Hospital, said. Kadam was even in the news around five years ago when he helped the police save a person from committing suicide. In a CCTV clip, Kadam was seen rushing to the person and pulling him down the bridge. He is survived by his wife and their three-and-a-half-year-old son.
“A case of culpable homicide needs to be registered against the driver as well as the company that hired Kadam and the other deceased because they are negligent as they have not followed any safety protocols to ensure the safety of their people. They were not given safety kits like reflective jackets or adequate training to deal with such situations,” Amol Matele, NCP spokesperson, who was at Nair hospital to help Kadam’s family, said. “We also want compensation and all other dues from the government because they died while discharging their duties,” he added.
Thirteen people were injured at the time and were rushed to nearby hospitals. Of the 10 who were taken to B Y L Nair Hospital, five were declared dead before admission and two women and one man were admitted for treatment. Two others were treated for minor injuries and discharged.
Three people, including a sea link security guard, were taken to three different hospitals – Global Hospital, Lilavati Hospital and Saifee Hospital.
“Pained by the loss of lives due to an accident on the Bandra-Worli Sea Link in Mumbai. Condolences to the bereaved families. I hope that those who have been injured have a speedy recovery,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted.