Staff Reporter

Relatives of victims allege reckless driving by lorry driver Relatives of victims allege reckless driving by the sand-laden lorry

TAMBARAM: Two persons were killed and nine injured when the vehicle in which they were travelling collided head-on with a stone-laden lorry on Vandalur-Kelambakkam Main Road on Wednesday.

Veerabhadran, 30, driver of the vehicle, and Shankar (37) of Nallambakkam were killed on the spot. The injured Ranjit Kumar (24), Balakrishnan (24), Kandan (25), Gunasekaran (48), Paramasivan (40), Anbu (43), Nithya (18), Surendran and Raman were admitted to the Government General Hospital in Chennai. The condition of two of them was said to be critical, sources said.

According to relatives, the group from Nallambakkam, near Vandalur, went to Tiruvannamalai to bring back Nithya, who was reportedly taken to the town by Paramasivan, for working in one of the stone crushing units in Nallambakkam. It was returning by the Tata Sumo (No. TN 39 M 6060) when the accident took place near the Otteri police station. The lorry (No. TN 22 AB 9495), headed to Vandalur, belonged to Govinda Perumal Blue Metals. It was carrying stones from a crushing unit in Unamanchery. While relatives at the hospital alleged that reckless driving by the lorry driver led to the accident, the police said investigations showed that the Tata Sumo was trying to overtake a van and rammed into the lorry. The lorry came to a halt after dashing against a tree. Relatives and friends of the victims said the accident pointed to the failure of government agencies to check the menace of lorries, operated by quarry and stone crushing units.

Villages of Keerapakkam, Nallambakkam, Unanamanchery and nearby areas are dotted with stone quarries and crushing units.

The movement of lorries has damaged whatever little is left of the road connecting these villages with Vandalur-Kelambakkam Main Road. The relatives said the lorry drivers were a law unto themselves.

Several accidents took place in the past but nothing was done to check the menace.

They hoped the authorities, particularly the police, would take steps to curtail overspeeding and reckless driving.