Private mini bus carrying schoolchildren topples, driver hurt
Passersby smash windshield to pull out children, teachers out of the damaged bus; accident took place when driver was trying to save the vehicle from a collision with an auto-rickshawnoida Updated: Nov 29, 2017 22:44 IST
A private mini bus that was being used to ferry schoolchildren in Noida met with an accident early on Wednesday morning near the Golf Course metro station.
There were 10 schoolchildren and two teachers in the van when the accident took place. None of the children or teachers was hurt in the accident, however, the driver received minor injuries. He was rushed to the hospital for first aid.
The accident took place around 8am near the Golf Course metro station. The private mini-bus turned on its side when the driver, in his attempt to avert a collision with an auto-rickshaw, hit the road divider instead.
The vehicle was privately arranged by parents of students from the Vishwa Bharati School in Noida’s Sector 28.
According to eyewitnesses, the children and teachers were rescued by passersby who smashed the windshield and pulled them out.
“As soon as the bus hit the divider, it toppled and fell on its side. People rushed to rescue those trapped inside the vehicle. They broke the windshield of the vehicle and somehow pulled the children and teachers out of the bus,” an eyewitness said.
Sector 39 station house officer Avnish Dixit said they were making a report to be submitted to the regional transport office.
“Prima facie, it appears that the driver was trying to save the vehicle from a collision with an auto-rickshaw that was ahead of him and a cycle rider was also closing in from the other side. The vehicle hit the divider and toppled. We have seized the vehicle and all children are safe. The driver received minor injuries. He is out of danger,” Dixit said.
Vishwa Bharati School authorities said the private mini bus does not belong to them. They added that only three to four students involved in the accident were from their school.
“It was a private vehicle arranged by the parents whose children study in different schools. There were 3-4 children of our school travelling in that vehicle. They reached school and attended classes,” spokesperson for Vishwa Bharati School, Noida, said.
Aassistant regional transport officer Himesh Tiwari said no action would be taken against the school authorities. “Had the bus belonged to the school management, then they are bound to follow the Supreme Court guidelines and action can be taken against them for negligence. But it was a private bus that was being used to ferry children. I request all parents to send their children in school buses only,” he said.
In 1997, the Supreme Court laid down elaborate guidelines for school bus operations across the country. According to the norms, school buses should have first-aid box, fire extinguisher, horizontal parallel grills on windows, school bag tray under the seat and provision for water. The apex court had also made it mandatory for a supervisor, deputed by the school, to accompany the children.