NAROWAL: Timely intervention by locals saved a family trapped in a burning car on Shakargarh Road, while despite desperate calls for help neither Rescue 1122 personnel concerned, nor traffic police could reach the spot in time.

According to locals, a family belonging to Attock was tarvelling to Narowal by their car. When they reached near Fez Park on Narowal-Shakargarh Road, the car suddenly caught fire because of reasons not known yet.

On seeing the car engulfed in flames, some passersby immediately came for help, rescued the family trapped in the burning car and called Rescue 1122 staff stationed at Narowal, just around two kilometres away from the spot. Despite repeated calls, a team of Rescue 1122 reached the spot after considerable delay.

Muhammad Azeem and Shaukat Ali, who were present at the scene, said they took out the family members from the burning car and phoned the Rescue 1122 a number of times but the Rescue team could not reach the spot on time. “Rescue 1122 team reached the spot when the car was burnt to ashes” Azeem said. He Rescue 1122 team cooled the car by throwing water on it and removed it from the road, he added.

Because of the accident, the traffic flow on the road remained suspended for around one and a half hours, resulting in long queues of vehicles on its both sides.

Despite the fact that the office of traffic police deputy superintendent’s is just a kilometre away, no police personnel bothered to visit the place on time. By the time the police arrived the traffic had already been restored.

Farman Ullah, a member of the family that was coming from Attock, said, “I phoned Rescue 1122 a number of times but they reached the spot when the car was completely burnt. Had Rescue 1122 personnel responded on time the car could have been saved.”

He demanded Chief Minister Usman Buzdar should take immediate notice of the fire incident and the inefficiency of Rescue 1122, Narowal and the traffic police.

Published in Dawn, February 23rd, 2020