Ghaziabad bus catches fire: Parents to meet school admin to discuss safety
It was a scary experience for students of classes 1 to 8 of Fr Agnel School when the bus they were travelling in caught fire at Ahimsa Khand on Tuesday afternoon. The bus started around 1pm from the school and made several drops before reaching Indirapuram.
A number of parents, upon learning about the fire, rushed to the site where local shopkeepers, guards, school bus staff and fire officials helped in rescuing the students.
The entire bus was charred and the interiors damaged in the fire, which is suspected to have started due to a leak in the CNG cylinder. While exiting the bus, most of the children left behind their school bags, water bottles, books and other belongings.
“I spoke to my son and he told that one girl who was sitting in front of him shouted that a fire started. The children got panicky but they were rescued by the staff and locals in the area soon. Within four-five minutes, the fire began to rage but all children had exited the bus. My wife had already reached the spot and called me; I rushed from my office in Delhi to Ghaziabad,” Ajay Singh, a parent, said.
Parents also said that they will meet the school authorities to ensure the safety of their children.
“The students were scared on seeing the raging fire. A majority of the school bags, books and belongings were burnt. It does not matter whether the bus belonged to the school or the contractor. We are sending our children to the school and the authorities have to take care of their safety. The school cannot escape the responsibility. A group of parents is also going to meet the school officials on Wednesday,” said Saket Jain, a parent.
“We have also tweeted to CM Yogi and education officials about the measures that should be ensured and enforced in school buses. The teacher had made a brave choice by immediately reacting to the situation and rescuing the children,” he said.
The fire department officials also reached the spot within minutes, as they were in Vasundhara to handle a fire that broke out in a playschool.
“We rushed within minutes and roped in two fire tenders to douse the fire. Many onlookers had brought fire extinguishers and other materials to douse the fire, but the fire was already blazing and the front portion of the bus got completely damaged,” said Som Dutt, fire safety officer, Vaishali.
Bablu, a guard from a nearby highrise, also rushed to the spot and brought along a fire extinguisher to help douse the fire. “I rushed to the spot with a fire extinguisher when I spotted flames emerging from the bus. There were other people who had also come with materials to douse the fire. We also helped the children exit the bus safely,” he said.
The incident took place in the vicinity of a number of highrise buildings in Ahimsa Khand and next to a market, shopkeepers of which also helped douse the fire.