In an accident that ultimately claimed the lives of three people, an ambulance burst into flames when it collided with a container truck. The driver lost control when a speeding truck rammed into the ambulance from behind while trying to overtake it.
The incident took place Friday afternoon on the Bengaluru-Tumakuru highway near Nelamangala as the ambulance was transporting a 40-year-old woman with a neurological condition to NIMHANS. The woman along with two others succumbed to their injuries on Saturday.
“All the six people would have been burnt alive, but a water tanker passing by came to their aid, and doused the flames before bystanders could pull the injured passengers from the mangled ambulance,” said a police officer.
Eyewitnesses told the police that on impact, the ambulance overturned before catching fire. Passers-by watched helplessly as the vehicle burst into flames. “The people trapped in the ambulance had sustained multiple fractures and could not come out. We could hear them cry for help but could do nothing,” an eyewitness told the police.
Prakash Kumar who was driving the water tanker was passing by in the opposite direction and heard the trapped family’s cries for help. He took a U-turn to reach the spot and locals poured water to control the fire. All six people were rescued and later shifted to Victoria Hospital. However, the patient, Hasina M. (41) from Sira Gate in Tumakuru and her relatives Chandini (24) and Saadiq (23) succumbed on Saturday.
According to the police, Hasina was suffering from a neurological condition and had to be taken to NIMHANS for advanced treatment. Saadiq borrowed an ambulance from a mosque in Sira and asked his friend Sadiqh B., a driver by profession, to take them to Bengaluru.
The injured have been identified as Salman (24) and Shabina Taj (30) and ambulance driver, Sadiqh B. ( 25), from Arekere are recovering in Victoria Hospital. The Nelamangala traffic policeare on the lookout for the truck driver and the container driver who are on the run.