5 dead, 7 hurt in highway accident near Satara

Victims from Vashi and Koparkhairane, all belonging to one family, had set out for a vacation to Goa

Five people died and seven others were injured in an accident on the Pune-Bangalore highway early on Saturday morning near Satara, around 288 km from Mumbai.

The accident occurred around 4.30 a.m. when the driver of the minibus in which they were travelling nodded off at the wheel and the vehicle fell from Tarali river overbridge into a 50-feet gorge.

Three of the deceased have been identified as Madhusudan Govindan Nair (42), his wife Usha Madhusudan Nair (40), their son Aditya Madhusudan Nair (23)— all residents of Sector 16, Vashi — and Saajan Nair (35) and his three-year-old son Aarav, both residents of sector 4 Koparkhairane.

The injured have been identified as the driver of the minibus Rinku Saajan Gupta (30), Divya Mohan (30), Sijish Shivdasan (28), Deepa Nair (32), Dipti Mohan (28), Leela Mohan (35) and Archana Nair (25).

All 11 travellers, belonging to one family, left Navi Mumbai on Friday at 9 p.m. for a vacation in Goa. They stopped at Khopoli for dinner and then started the journey again.

On the outskirts of Umraj village in Satara, after reaching Tarali river overbridge, the driver dozed off. The vehicle rammed onto the edge of the bridge and fell into the gorge. “The bridge is a two-lane bridge with a gap in between two lanes. After the vehicle fell into the gorge, one of the injured rang phone the police and we reached the spot. The vehicle was taken out with the help of a crane,” said Superintendent of Police, Highway Safety Patrol, Pune, Sanjay Jadhav.

While the injured are being treated at Satara civil hospital, the bodies are at Karad civil hospital. The family, originally hailing from Kerala, was settled in Navi Mumbai since years.

The driver, Mr. Gupta, has been booked by Umraj police for rash driving and causing death by negligence.


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