Road safety experts attribute accident to bad highway design, error of judgment.
The Palghar police have registered an accidental death report in the accident on Sunday afternoon in which former Tata Sons’ chairman Cyrus Mistry and his friend Jehangir Pandole died. As they were travelling in a Mercedes GLC SUV, a team of experts from the car company will also carry out a probe to ascertain if the accident occurred due to any malfunction.
The post-mortem reports of the deceased from JJ Hospital, which was released to the grieving families on Monday night, cited polytrauma – major injuries to vital organs – as the cause of death.
Mumbai gynaecologist Anahita Pandole was driving the car and lost control while overtaking another vehicle at high speed. The car hit a road divider on Surya river bridge at Charoti, Palghar. She and her husband Darius were shifted to Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital at Girgaum for further treatment through a special green corridor on Monday morning.
A senior highway police official, who is probing the case, said, “As per preliminary investigation, speeding and error of judgment caused the accident. Both the deceased were not wearing seat belts. Analysis of CCTV cameras at the Dapchary check post show that the car crossed it at 2.12 pm and the accident took place around 20 km ahead in the direction of Mumbai.”
He said, “Probably the other heavy vehicle must have swerved to the right to avoid a pothole and the speeding Mercedes probably couldn’t see the road splitting ahead, therefore crashing into the road divider.”
According to former ADGP Maharashtra highway police, RK Padmanabhan, lane cutting is the common cause for a majority of road accidents.