Against the backdrop of Sunday’s road accident in Palghar, resulting in the death of industrialist Cyrus Mistry and one more person, the Palghar Police said on Thursday that Dr Anahita Pandole, who was at the wheels, had applied brakes five seconds prior to the accident.
Palghar SP Balasaheb Patil said the police have a received an interim report from Mercedes on the crash late Wednesday.
“The report sent to us by Mercedes said that the vehicle was being driven at a speed of 100 kmph and Dr Anahita Pandole applied brakes five seconds prior to the accident. When the crash took place, the vehicle was travelling at a speed of 89 kmph,” he added.
Mistry (54) and his friend Jahangir Pandole were killed Sunday when their car hit a road divider in Palghar. Two other car occupants, Anahita Pandole (55) and her husband Darius Pandole (60) had suffered injuries. Both were admitted to Shri H N Reliance Foundation Hospital and Research Centre in Mumbai.
A Mercedes spokesperson said the letter to the SP was an internal communication.
Meanwhile, the district administration on Thursday asked the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), which manages NH-48 where the mishap took place, to install rumbler strips (grooves and indents used as warning and slowing mechanism) on at least 12 spots on the highway.
“We have told the NHAI to intall rumbler strips on at least 12 spots so that the speed of vehicles automatically reduces. We have also asked them to install cats eyes reflectors and signages to caution motorists,” said Patil.
Palghar Collector Govind Bodke said a joint visit of highway officials and police has been planned for September 14 to find out technical flaws and recommend mitigating measures.
They have been asked to put prominent signboards at black spots (perennially accident prone stretches) on the route, the collector added.
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“As a short-term measure, rumblers (grooves and indents used as warning and slowing mechanism) will be put up on the highway. Curves will be inspected and measures like lane reduction will be discussed during the joint visit,” Bodke said after a meeting of the police, NHAI, PWD, MSRDC, CIDCO and other stakeholders in the evening.
The police have also asked NHAI and other authorities to install CCTV cameras at a distance of every 2 km on the highway. Patil said the police have also asked for the deployment of cranes and a fire tender on the stretch.
Meanwhile, Darius Pandole, who survived the accident, underwent a surgery on Thursday to fix his forearm fractures.
“The surgery went well. He is stable and recuperating… Dr Anahita Pandole is still under observation, stable and is improving,” a source said.