Nedumkandam: High velocity winds are posing a big danger to vehicles at Thevarammettu here. In the latest incident, a school bus belonging to St Thomas' LP School, Kombayar, was blown from the road along the hill by the wind and the vehicle tumbled down a precipice.
Similar accidents have taken place at the sharp curve at Thevarmmettu earlier too and the spot is a nightmare for drivers. Luckily, when the school bus fell into the abyss, there was nobody inside the vehicle. The bus was returning to school after dropping around 30 students living in the area. The driver and a teacher travelling in the bus stopped the vehicle near the curve to relieve themselves.
As soon as they got down from the bus, the vehicle rolled to the edge of the road in the strong wind and fell 50 feet down the hill. Incidentally, Thevarammettu is a favourite of tourists, who arrive in large numbers to enjoy the distant sight of Tamil Nadu and scenes of the forest area in the neighbouring state. The visitors park their vehicles close to the edge of the road. After they alight from their vehicle and leave the doors open, the entire vehicle would shake in the wind. However, some local people said that the school bus was the first vehicle to fall into the depths.
Most of the hills in the spot are very high. It is the state boundary between Kerala and Tamil Nadu and the Nedumkandam - Thevarammettu road winds up and down through these hills. Another reason for the mishaps is the lack of crash barriers along the road.
MVD takes action
After the school bus suffered severe damage when it was pushed down the hill by the wind, officials of the Motor Vehicles Department (MVD) from Udumbanchola inspected the spot at Thevarammmettu. The school bus was given fitness during school reopening time. Officials said the bus rolled ahead owing to the wind and fell into the abyss.
Crash barriers to come up
Meanwhile, the authorities have issued directives to build crash barriers along the hairpin bends at Thevarammettu. Another recent tragedy in the area involved a retired sub-inspector of police. His vehicle fell into the precipice, leading to the death of the ex-cop. This incident had taken place in the Udumbanchola police station limits.
At the same time, the Public Works Department officials said that it was for the Udumbanchola police to set up crash barriers to avoid accidents.