A rickshaw driver escaped with minor injuries after it caught fire in Ghatkopar East yesterday afternoon, and rammed into two cars, which were also completely charred. The rickshaw driver escaped with minor injuries and was rushed to Rajawadi Hospital for treatment. Fire officials reached the spot within 20 minutes and managed to douse the fire but all vehicles were completely burnt.
The two cars that were burnt after the rickshaw hit them. Pics/Swarali Purohit
The incident took place at around 3.20 pm at Vikram Chowk in Ghatkopar East when 51-year-old Nityanand Dubey, the rickshaw driver (no MH02 CT533) was ferrying two passengers to Govandi. Dubey said while he was near Sai Vaibhav Society, a fire broke out in the rickshaw. “The passengers jumped out and when the fire engulfed the vehicle, even I jumped out,” said Dubey.
Burning rickshaw rams into cars
As Dubey jumped out of the rickshaw, the unmanned vehicle rammed into two cars parked alongside the road. The driver of one of the cars was inside, and had a lucky escape. Suraj Rajput, the driver of a Celerio, said he had heard a loud bang and opened the door to check what happened, when he saw the burning rickshaw and managed to jump out. “I was having lunch, as the car owner too had gone for lunch at the nearby hotel. I sustained minor injuries but managed to jump out in time,” said Rajput.
The other car was a Swift Desire whose owner drove it herself.
Driver sustains minor injuries
After he jumped out, local residents took Dubey to Rajawadi Hospital for treatment. They said the two passengers who were unhurt, ran away. “Dubey has sustained minor burns on his hands and legs which are about 10-15 %. He is stable and will be discharged in a day or two,” said a doctor.
High-rise’s tank under maintenance
Local residents who rushed to douse the fire, alleged that the residents of the nearby 12-storey Sai Vaibhav Society refused to give them fire extinguishers or pipes, as the water tank of the building was allegedly under maintenance.
Eyewitnesses said the watchman turned them down saying he didn’t know where the fire extinguishers are. “We asked residents to provide a pipe to douse the fire, they said that their tank was under maintenance and they didn’t have any water. But we used water from taps there and tried to douse the fire till fire brigade officials reached the spot,” said a local resident.
A member of the society later said while their fire fighting system is working fine, it was just yesterday that their tank was empty due to maintenance and since the watchman is new, he didn’t know about the fire extinguishers.