Lam: A bridge of bad memories

Poor disaster management efforts by administration can be gauged from the fact that a low lying bridge at RajpurPatta in Nowshera that became a cause of 2014 Nowshera bus tragedy killing over seventy persons.

The bus accident took place on September 5 in 2014 when flash flood hit the area and a bus carrying barat of Sukhwinder Singh of RajpurPatta was on way to Lam from RajpurPatta.

At RajpurPatta, hardly a few hundred meters from the house of groom, the bus was crossing a low lying bridge over a small water channel which suddenly swell as flash flood resulted in a sharp rise in water level and the bus got washed away in the water currents.

After the tragic accident, a rescue operation was launched but no one was found alive and bodies were recovered from the accident site as well as down the stream that too at a distance of over fifty kilometres.

“The cause of the accident was a flash flood as well as a low lying bridge as a high bridge could have saved the lives of so many souls.” said Harbaksh Singh, a resident of the area who lost many of his relatives in this tragic accident.

He added that the irony of this tragedy is that government authorities did nothing for victim families as an entire village became a cremation ground but authorities did not even bother to repair the bridge which caused this tragedy.

“Even today, the bridge is of the same low lying height and flash flood water passes over it.” said Singh.

He further said that the debris of the ill-fated bus that met with the accident is also lying at one side of the bridge which revives memory of this tragedy whenever we pass over the bridge.

Additional DC Nowshera S Sambyal said that up-gradition of this bridge and to raise its level from river bed is under consideration with concerned authorities BRO.