TAMIL NADU

15 injured as MTC buses collide

CHENNAI, DEC. 22. Nearly 15 persons including three women and a 15-year-old boy sustained injuries, when the MTC bus in which they were travelling collided with another bus on P.T. Rajan Salai, K.K.Nagar this morning.

In the mishap, the drivers of both the buses (37D Express-fleet number TWA 555 and 49A _ IYG 432) Mr. Anbazhagan and Mr. Rajendran fractured their legs and have been admitted to the Government General hospital, along with the injured passengers. While one of the drivers had put in 10 years of service, another driver had completed seven years.

One of the commuters, Mr. Bujangarajan, who travelled by the 49A (T.Nagar to Poonamallee) bus said, he was standing behind the driver's seat. He saw the bus moving at the oncoming MTC vehicle and it collided. Splinters flew and hit him on the forehead. Similar was the case of another commuter, Mr. Narayanan who sustained injuries on his lips in the collision. Lakshmipathy, a 15-year-old school student lost two teeth and another elderly woman sustained injuries in her hip.

A common complaint by most of the commuters was that the drivers were driving the buses in a rash manner at a time when it was raining heavily. The negligent attitude of both the drivers had led to the accident, complained the commuters. Luckily the buses did not collide head on, as this would have aggravated the casualties, an MTC officer said. The driver seat and a few other seats behind it were ripped off in one of the buses.

As far as compensation to the injured, it would be pursued in the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal (MACT) and after completing the procedures, compensation would be given to the injured persons, an MTC officer said.

The MTC officials came to the spot, brought the injured and admitted them to the Government General hospital, another commuter said. The MTC Managing Director, Mr. Swaran Singh, came to the Government General hospital even before the arrival of injured commuters.

In such accidents, MTC, which does not have insurance, does not make immediate payment to its passengers to meet the unforeseen expenditure imposed by the accidents. The MTC drivers must adhere to traffic regulations, commuters point out.