Always bustling Mumbai-Pune Expressway came to a standstill on a long weekend of Christmas Eve after a major accident. The mishap led to the overheating of small vehicles, thereby causing a day-long traffic on Saturday.
Motorists, who were rushing towards their desired destination were left stranded for hours on the stretch. A motorist stated, “My family and I started for Pune from Sion at 12pm and reached at 5.30pm. We usually cover the distance in two and half hours but it took us more than an hour to travel from Vashi toll naka to Panvel itself.”
Social media platforms like Twitter was also abuzz with warnings asking people to refrain from venturing out on Mumbai Pune Expressway.
It all started when a trailer overturned on the Mumbai-bound carriageway in the wee hours. Even Pune-bound carriageway saw heavy traffic at Adoshi tunnel and Amrutanjan Bridge. There were many vehicles which were observed plying along the wrong route near Khandala Ghat.
According to the Pune superintendent of police of state highway traffic police, Amol Tambe, “We are deploying a fresh team in the Ghat section from our Urse team for tonight and Sunday.”
“As it is night and there are few cranes in the Ghat, we sought help from the (Apghatgrastanchya Madatisathi Samajik Sanstha, Khopoli) team for stranded families,” added Tambe. Apart from arranging for emergency vehicles on the Ghat, AMSS offered water and milk to the people who were stuck in this agonizing traffic halt.
Vijay Patil, the state highway traffic patrol headquarter superintendent of police, “Around 5.30am, ahead of Amrutanjan bridge, a trailer loaded with machinery and spares turtle on the Mumbai carriageway. Two lanes were shut and one lane was open. The traffic jam extended up to 7km in the Ghat section till 1.30pm.” The driver of the trailer was badly injured.
He added, “The golden hour was enforced by stopping multi-axle vehicles. However, the situation worsened as vehicles turned up on the Pune carriageway on a large scale. We deputed 20 additional traffic personnel but it was of no help. We took help from Apghatgrastanchya Madatisathi Samajik Sanstha to provide food and water to our staff.”