Two men were killed and another was seriously injured after being knocked down by a private bus that spun out of control on the Howrah bridge on Monday afternoon.
Eyewitnesses told the police that the Howrah-bound bus was racing another bus on the same route — number 28 — when the driver lost control. The buses on route 28 ply between Sealdah and Howrah, via Mahatma Gandhi Road.
“The accident occurred around 3pm. We have recorded statements of some eyewitnesses. CCTV footage of cameras on the stretch is being examined and the owner of the bus has been summoned for questioning,” said a senior officer of the Howrah police commissionerate. A case of rash and negligent driving resulting in death has been started. The bus has been seized and the driver arrested.
Eyewitnesses told the police that the bus was trying to race past another bus on the same route on its way to the Howrah station complex when the driver slammed the brakes on spotting some pedestrians near a divider.
The bus swerved right close to pillar number 1 of the Howrah bridge and came to a halt after knocking down three pedestrians, who were trying to cross the road, and hitting the divider.
A few other pedestrians jumped off the bus’s path in the nick of time.
With three persons lying on the road in a pool of blood, a section of pedestrians stopped the bus and held the driver before alerting the police.
Police officers at the spot called for an ambulance and rushed the three to the Howrah District Hospital, where two of them were declared dead. The third was admitted to the hospital.
The police were yet to ascertain the identity of the victims. “The bus driver started driving rashly after he spotted another bus on the same route after crossing the Brabourne Road flyover,” a passenger on the bus that met with the accident told the investigating officer.
In June, at least 11 persons were injured when two buses collided on the bridge.