Huge Tree Branch Crashes on Slow Moving Bus – Lady Commuter Injured
Mangaluru: In spite of falling tree branches and also trees getting uprooted and causing heavy damage to buildings, property, vehicles, and also injuring commuters, the district authorities/MCC Officials/Forest Department Authorities have not taken any action in trimming branches or chopping down old hazardous trees. In the past few months, Mangaluru City had witnessed quite a few trees branches coming crashing down or trees being uprooted and landing on building/homes.vehicles and people. While Environmentalists and Forest Department Officials are quick enough to be at the spot to stop trimming or cutting hazardous trees, but when these trees come crashing down on vehicles, houses, walls, commuters etc, you’ll not find any of these activists nor forest dept officials. Nor they visit the injured person/persons in the hospital. Guess Why? They feel guilty!
Once again after Mangaluru had seen quite a few fallen trees creating huge losses to property, around noon time today, 28 January, a huge branch of a tree located near Hampankatta, in front of Ideal Ice Cream Parlour/Wenlock Hospital, came crashing down on a slow moving bus named Rajarajeshwari, bearing reg no KA 19 C 6149, plying between Mangaluru to Kateel/Kinnigoli, thereby blocking the movement of traffic in that area for a while. The first personnel to arrive at the scene were the fire brigade personnel, followed by the police after a while. Luckily this accident didn’t seriously hurt people or create heavy damage, but injured a lady commuter who was waiting for the bus. And also that the tree branch had falling on top of the bus, and didn’t land directly on the ground, luckily the large number of commuters who wait there to catch their respective buses escaped from getting hurt. Also lucky were a few street vendors, who always do their business near the bottom of this tree.
The lady commuter injured is 45-year-old Mercy D’souza hailing from Padil, who was waiting for her bus to arrive. Sustaining head injuries, she was quickly rushed to the nearby Wenlock Hospital, where it is learnt that her condition is stable. Speaking to media, ACP Manjunath Shetty said, “The Traffic police department will request MCC, Forest department and other concerned authorities to check on old trees, which pose danger to the public. Either they should cut the trees or at least trim the branches, so that no one gets hurt, and the incident that happened today is not repeated”.
So coming to the point, lately while scores of old trees have falling all over the city following strong gales, resulting in damages to vehicles and property, why hasn’t the concerned authorities taken any precautionary measures. With most of the trees having no room for their roots to spread out and this leads to gradual decay. In other cases, growing trees had their branches cut regularly on one side, because they leaned on to private property; the trees grew up lopsided and leaned far on to the roads. This means their remaining branches too were regularly being trimmed and they lost strength. The concerned authorities are expected to monitor a city-wide “tree census” to determine how many trees are really a danger to traffic or at risk of falling down during heavy rain and strong winds. Trees which are unable to bear the air pollution and decaying should also be identified. But seems like no one is doing their job right- and as a result we have trees or their branches come crashing down on vehicles etc now and then.
A few officials from MCC say that when they are ready to trim or cut down old and hazardous trees, they are usually stopped by environment activists or Forest dept officials- so they are in a fix. On the other hand, the problem with our MCC authorities is that they wait till the trees fall, and then only take action. The safety of pedestrians and of all road users should be the first and most important priority for National Highway authorities and also local authorities and also for a State body that has responsibility in this area. Some of these trees may have disease, which is a clear indication of root rot. Through this report Team Mangalorean is asking as a matter of urgency with the concerned people at MCC and Forest department that old and hazardous trees are inspected and that those that appear in any way dubious should be promptly removed, before they crash down resulting in injuries or death to motorists or pedestrians.
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