Driver follows Google Maps, car falls into 30-ft trench
Kothamangalam (Ernakulam): Three persons had a miraculous escape after the car in which they were travelling fell into a water-filled trench dug up to construct a bridge as the driver followed a route shown in Google Maps.
The trio was travelling in a car to Munnar via Palamattam-Avolichal road. The car fell upside down into a 30-feet deep trench near to Injathotti first block near Palamattam.
The incident took place on Thursday midnight. Thrissur Wadakkancherry natives Gokuldas (23), Isahakh (29) and Musthfa (36) were travelling in the car and escaped with minor injuries.
They noticed that there was no road ahead only after reaching the edge of the trench. Though the driver quickly tried to turn the car, he lost control and it fell into the water.
The passengers did not understand what was happening due to darkness and mist. Gokuldas told Mathrubhumi that they could escape as the car windows were kept open. There was 8-feet of water inisde the trench. The three did not know swimming and had to hang on to the car for about 15 minutes until help arrived.
Later, a team of six persons including Punnekkad natives Benny, Roy and Kuttachan, who were returning on bikes after a night shift in a rubber manufacturing company at Pothupara, rescued the trio. They heard cries for help from the trench and lowered in tied-up dhotis to bring all three to safety.
The trio were taken to a house nearby. They had sustained minor injuries to theair heads and chests. Their mobile phones and Rs 12,000 in cash fell in the water, the natives searched the trench retrieved Rs 4,000 and one mobile phone. By noon, the car was taken out of the trench using a crane.
The trio ended up in the trench as they failed to notice the warning sign on the way. The locals alleged that the PWD and contract workers did not follow the rules and had failed to set up warning boards on both sides of the trench.
Many a people depend on Google Map to go to Munnar and other high range areas. The map shows Palamattam-Avolicahal road as the shortcut to Munnar from Kothamangalam.
Minutes after rescuing the three men, a six-member group from Tirur arrived in the area after following Google Maps. The locals informed them about the accident and sent them back.