Ghatkopar Hoarding Collapse: Auto Driver Succumbs After 9-Day Battle, Death Toll Rises to 17

Ghatkopar Hoarding Collapse: Auto Driver Succumbs After 9-Day Battle, Death Toll Rises to 17

he death toll rose to 17 after Raju Sonawane, a critical patient admitted to KEM Hospital, passed away on Wednesday morning.

RUCHA KANOLKARUpdated: Wednesday, May 22, 2024, 07:20 PM IST
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Raju Sonawane Critically Admitted At Hospital | FPJ (Rucha Kolankar)

Mumbai: The collapse of a massive 120x120 feet hoarding in Ghatkopar's Pant Nagar has claimed 17 lives, leaving 75 injured. The death toll rose to 17 after Raju Sonawane, a critical patient admitted to KEM Hospital, passed away on Wednesday morning.

Raju Sonawane, a 53-year-old auto rickshaw driver, was a resident of Ghatkopar's Ramabai Ambedkar Nagar but had recently moved his family to Badlapur. Sonawane's wife works as a housekeeper and their son is still studying. He had recently taken a loan to buy a house in Badlapur.

Every day, he commuted from Badlapur to Ghatkopar to drive his auto rickshaw. On that fateful day, he was in line to refill CNG in his auto when the weather suddenly changed. Heavy rain began, and a strong windstorm caused the hoarding to collapse onto the petrol pump where Raju was refueling. He was immediately rescued and admitted to the ICU section of Ghatkopar's Rajawadi Hospital.

A massive pillar fell on Raju's chest, causing severe injuries and internal bleeding in his lungs. The weight on his chest also led to blood clots. The Free Press Journal spoke with his family, who revealed that Raju was the sole breadwinner. Among all the patients admitted to Rajawadi, Sonawane's condition was the most critical, prompting his transfer to KEM Hospital in Parel for better treatment.

His niece, Sushmita Sonawane, 28, shared, "Uncle had suffered extensive internal injuries, particularly to his lungs, as a large portion of metal fell directly on his body. His lungs developed clots, requiring urgent medical attention. However, his condition was too precarious for him to undergo tests or move. He was on life support for many days. As the backbone of the family, his absence has placed a significant burden on us."

Doctors from Rajawadi Hospital explained, "It was a case of Hemothorax. Hemothorax is a serious condition in which blood collects in your pleural space. The pleural space is a hollow area (cavity) between your lungs and your rib cage. Without treatment, blood can continue to accumulate and put so much pressure on the outside of your lung that it can’t fully inflate. Hemothorax caused shortness of breath (dyspnea), rapid breathing (hyperventilation), rapid heart rate, chest pain, and low blood pressure (hypotension) in the patient's health."

Dr. Bharati Hemant Rajulwala, Medical Superintendent of Rajawadi Hospital, told FPJ, "The patient was shifted to KEM Hospital on May 15. He had chest trauma, making it very difficult for us to even take him for a CT scan or move him anywhere for tests. His condition only worsened since he was admitted, with no improvement seen despite treatments. KEM Hospital is a super specialty hospital, which is why he was shifted there."

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