A heavy downpour that lashed Chümoukedima Tuesday evening, triggered one of the worst ever freak accident, when huge boulders from a slope rolled down and crushed three vehicles on the NH 29 near old police checkpost Chümoukedima, killing one on the spot while another died of fatal injury on way to hospital.
Two others- one male and one female were admitted to ICU at Christian Institute of Health Sciences and Research.
The freak accident occurred Tuesday at around 5.30 p.m. when the three vehicles along with other vehicles, had slowed down due to mudslide ahead while on way towards Chümoukedima and Dimapur.
A dash-cam video clip shot from another vehicle at the rear, showed a horrifying scene of one of the boulders smashing a car with great force and crushing it. The car had three occupants- one who died on way to hospital while the wife and another male occupant suffered serious injury and admitted to ICU.
Seconds later the boulder with great force hit and toppled another car and crushed the driver inside.
Some seconds later another boulder smashed a car ahead but the occupants miraculously escaped with minor injuries.
One of the occupants who died of fatal injuries while on way to hospital was identified as- Hav. Thanghiu (48) from 3rd NAP and attached with 1st NAP from Nukunuking village, Noklak district. The other deceased was identified as Temjennochet (55) of Changki village and resident of Lengrijan. He was reportedly alone in the vehicle when it was crushed and toppled by the boulder that had hit the other car seconds earlier.
Among the two injured admitted to ICU at CIHSR included Tsoiniu (45) wife of the deceased Hav. Thanghiu. The other injured was identified as constable Piming Khiam (42) of Nukunuking village Noklak district and resident of Diphupar. Both were among three travelling in the same car.
Another person, a female suffered minor injuries but not admitted to hospital, sources said.
According to police, the vehicles that were damaged include—Tata Harrier, Maruti Alto and Maruti Wagon R.
Vehicular traffic was halted for a few kilometres following the incident.
In this regard, the Nagaland Pollution Control Board (NPCB) had raised concerns over environmental clearance with regard to the road along Khuokhi river to Chathe river bridge. However, it was revealed that National Highway & Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd (NHIDCL) the implementing agency managed to get around the concerns. Also, various organisations including NPCB had asked NHIDCL to not use dynamites for blasting rocks on the hill slopes as it was certain to cause instability underneath the fragile soil.
Following Tuesday’s freak accident, Dimapur police, in view of public safety concerns, have diverted NH-29 stretch to 7th Mile Chümoukedima Jn–Shokhuvi–Pimla–Mhainamtsi–Punglwa– Jharnapani–Medziphema and vice-versa with immediate effect till further notice.
In an advisory, commissioner of police Dimapur Kevithuto Sophie stated that given the incessant rainfall inclement environmental conditions further rockslide/landslide cannot be ruled out along Chümoukedima-Kohima NH-29 stretch.