High-level panel to probe A.P. bus accident

Kin to receive Rs. 9.5 ex gratia, says APSRTC Chairman Mallikarjun Reddy

The Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) has constituted a high-level three-member committee to probe into the circumstances that led to the bus accident at Jangareddygudem in West Godavari district, which claimed 10 lives on Wednesday, December 15, 2021.

The enquiry panel comprises the Corporation’s Regional Manager, Deputy Chief Mechanical Engineer and Deputy Chief Traffic Manager.

The Corporation Chairman A. Mallikarjun Reddy said the committee would soon submit its report that would be forwarded to the Government. An ex gratia of ₹9.5 lakhs would be paid to the kin of the deceased, he said, informing that the Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy had announced financial aid of ₹5 lakh to the families of the accident victims, the Centre had also offered ₹2 lakh ex gratia to each of the family while the RTC would grant an assistance of ₹2.5 lakh, he said.

He said the RTC would provide employment to one member of the family of the driver S. Chinna Rao who died in the accident on compassionate grounds. His family would receive other benefits worth ₹50 lakh, he said.

Mr. Reddy said the accident was “very unfortunate” and conveyed his profound grief to the bereaved families of the victims. He said some of the passengers who managed to escape the tragedy had informed him that as the bus reached the bridge across Jalleru stream, it shook violently before plunging into the water body from the left side of the bridge.

Ten people, who were trapped inside and could not find their way out of the vehicle, including the 48-year-old driver Chinna Rao, died at the spot and the injured were rushed to hospital, he said.

Expressing concern over the increase in frequency of such accidents involving buses of the APSRTC, Mr. Reddy directed the officials to ensure adequate measures like imparting quality training to the drivers and surprise checks to see the condition of the buses and replacement of the outdated vehicles with the new ones.

Referring to allegations that the steering was not in proper condition, which led to the accident, Mr. Reddy informed that the vehicle was bought in 2019 and it was in good condition and even the driver had a clean record. He said any possibility of his ill-health leading to the imbalance could be established only after receiving the post-mortem report.

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