The mangled vehicle after it fell into a ditch at Debour Ghati in Koderma on Friday. Picture by Dev Kumar Sinha
Hazaribagh, Oct. 19: A 10-year-old boy was killed on the spot and his father critically injured today when an LPG tanker skidded off a valley and hit the duo before plunging into a ditch near the state border with Bihar in Koderma.
The incident, which occurred around 8.30am on the busy NH-33 at Debour Ghati, 20km from the district headquarters, prompted the police to cordon off the area and prevent traffic movement on the route, as the leakage of gas from the overturned tanker raised fears of a fire.
Satyendra Bhuiyan, 40, a resident of Hardiya village in neighbouring Nawada district of Bihar, with son Vikas was waiting by the roadside for a passenger vehicle, when the tanker emerged and overturned before crushing them.
The victims also fell into the 14ft deep ditch. Satyendra was rushed to Koderma sadar hospital, where his condition is said to be critical, while his sonís body was sent for post-mortem.
According to police, the driver of the Bharat Petroleum tanker ó on its way from Patna to Ranchi ó and a cleaner survived the mishap and fled the spot.
Koderma police station officer in charge Ranjan Choudhary rushed to the spot and ordered to stop vehicles from venturing within 1km of the accident site.
District superintendent of police Shambhu Thakur and sub-divisional police officer Vikas Pandey also arrived at the spot later.
Police alerted personnel at Domchanch (Koderma), Barhi (Hazaribagh) and Nawada stations to stop all vehicles on the route, besides informing officials of Bharat Petroleum about the mishap. Pandey said rescue teams in Hazaribagh, Bokaro and Dhanbad were asked to reach the spot tonight and tow away the tanker.
Police said the accident occurred because the driver failed to negotiate a sharp turn in the valley, which is notorious for its hairpin bends that lead to frequent road mishaps.
Debour Ghati is also surrounded by dense forests on either side of the road that are known to be a refuge of criminals and rebels.
Thousands of vehicles ply on the stretch of NH-33, as it connects the state capitals of Bihar and Jharkhand. However, after the accident this morning, vehicles took a detour from Barhi by bypassing Koderma and opting for Grand Trunk Road to reach Gaya and Jehanabad on way to Patna.