A heart-wrenching incident happened on the Samruddhi Expressway near Sindkhedraja in Buldhana as a private passenger bus travelling from Nagpur to Pune met with a horrifying accident. The bus collided with a road divider around 1.30 am, resulting in a devastating fire that claimed the lives of 26 passengers.
However, amidst the chaos and despair, a tale of survival and bravery emerged, as one survivor shared his harrowing experience of escaping the burning vehicle.
Survivor Breaks Window to Escape the Inferno
Recounting the terrifying incident, the survivor revealed that the bus tire burst, triggering an immediate and uncontrollable fire. Panic spread rapidly among the passengers, as the flames engulfed the bus within moments.
Yet, amidst the chaos, the survivor and a fellow passenger seated beside him mustered the strength and determination to break the rear window, providing them with a desperate escape route. Through sheer courage, they managed to navigate their way out of the burning vehicle, saving their own lives.
"A tyre of the bus burst and the vehicle caught fire immediately. The blaze spread in no time. The passenger seated next to me and I managed to escape by breaking the rear window," the survivor recounted.
A Glimpse of Hope Amidst the Tragedy
As news of the accident reached authorities, both the police and fire brigade swiftly arrived at the scene. However, the survivor highlighted that not everyone was able to escape the raging inferno. A local resident expressed that four to five passengers were fortunate enough to break one of the bus windows and flee. Tragically, many others were unable to follow suit, leaving them trapped in the rapidly deteriorating situation.
A Cry for Help Unanswered
The survivor revealed that those who managed to escape desperately sought assistance from passing vehicles on the highway. However, their pleas for help fell on deaf ears, as no one stopped to offer aid. The local resident lamented the lack of support from fellow travellers on the road, emphasizing that if more vehicles had stopped to lend a hand, additional lives could have been spared from the merciless blaze.
A Witness to the Horrific Scene
One resident who rushed to the accident site shared the chilling account of what unfolded before their eyes. "Many accidents have occurred on this treacherous stretch of road," the resident said and added they had never encountered a tragedy of this magnitude. The sight was haunting, with the tires of the bus in shambles and people inside desperately attempting to break the windows in a desperate bid for survival. Sadly, their efforts were in vain, as the ferocious fire raged with such intensity that nothing could be done. The onlookers stood helplessly, their hearts heavy with grief and eyes filled with tears.
"Many accidents take place on this route at Pimpalkhuta. We were called for help and when we went there, we saw the horrible situation. The tyres had fallen apart. People inside were trying to break the windows. We saw people getting burnt alive...The fire was so intense that we could not do anything. We were in tears...," he said.
Had the vehicles passing by the highway stopped for help, more lives could have been saved, he added.