Negligent attitude of ambulance driver, assistant leads to youth’s death
The city witnessed an inhuman face on Sunday afternoon when two victims of a road accident on National Highway 2 near Maitipara Bridge at Nishchinda in Howrah were not taken to hospital due to the lackadaisical attitude of the driver and medical assistant medical assistant of an ambulance run by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI).
One of the two youth Sachin Halder (35) was declared brought dead when taken to Belur State General Hospital while his friend Atanu Ghosh (30) was admitted to Howrah District Hospital with severe leg injuries. A pall of gloom descended in the locality of Sachin when the news of his death reached his family members.
This comes at the time when NHAI authorities identified 18 accident prone spots terming those as “black spots” and taking steps to provide immediate medical assistance following any mishap after Trinamool Congress MP Abhishek Banerjee had met with an accident on National Highway 2 while returning from a meeting of the party in Murshidabad.
Police said Sachin, who was a resident of Birati, was riding a two-wheeler with his friend Atanu, a resident of Dum Dum, sitting on the pillion. The accident took place when they were heading towards Domjur as they had bagged a job of making false ceiling of an office premises.
Their bike skidded when a truck brushed against their two-wheeler. They fell on the ground. Both were wearing helmets. But Sachin’s helmet came off of his head when he fell from the bike and he received severe head injuries. His friend Atanu received severe leg injuries.
Policemen including the inspector-in-charge (IC) of Nischinda police station Sanjib Sarkar reached the spot within a few minutes as he was patrolling the area. He informed the Nivedita Setu toll plaza to send an ambulance.
Police said that the ambulance had also reached the spot without wasting anytime and according to the eye-witnesses, Sachin was alive then. But, the situation turned worse after the driver and medical assistant of the ambulance refused to take Sachin to hospital in the ambulance. They claimed that he had expired and they would not take a dead body in the ambulance.
The IC, however, continued requesting them to take Sachin to hospital without losing anytime as he was alive then and his life could have been saved if he had been taken to hospital without losing the 45 minutes arguing whether he was alive or not. When the driver and medical assistant of the ambulance continued refusing to take Sachin to hospital, the other youth Atanu was also writhing in pain while lying in a pool of blood on the national highway.
Local people gathered in the area and the ambulance driver had to take the youth to hospital after being pressurised by the local people. According to the local people the delay in taking them to the hospital led to the death of Sachin.
Sanjib Sharma, a senior official of NHAI, said that there would be an inquiry into the incident and steps would also be taken against them if they are found guilty. There used to be a medical assistant in an ambulance and he checks whether a victim is dead or alive. “If the medical assistant finds that a person is alive then he would take him to hospital in the ambulance and inform the police if he or she is dead,” he said.