ibnlive » India

Mar 31, 2008 at 12:38am IST

Airport employee dies in a accident

Mumbai An airport employee died when he was hit by a speeding coach at the Mumbai airport. 40-year-old Dnyaneshwar Kunte, was helping load a Kenya Airways flight, when a speeding Air India coach hit a trolley, which fell and crushed him to death.

Cambata Aviation employee, Ramesh Tiwari said, "The coach was speeding, and was also very close to the flight — which is against safety norms."

It's not clear if the accident was caused by drunken or reckless driving, or if the driver, who is now absconding, fell asleep at the wheel, but eyewitnesses say key safety procedure was flouted.

The approved speed limit for vehicles on the tarmac is 40 kmph the coach was clearly going faster than that.

Vehicles are also required to maintain a distance of 150 metres from the aircraft, but the coach drove right under the plane's wing.

A statement from the Airport authorities admits a space crunch at the airport increases the chance of such accidents.

Kunte was an employee of Cambata Aviation, which provides ground personnel services at the airport. Shortly after the mishap, his colleagues went on a strike that lasted six hours — causing considerable inconvenience to passengers.

"I landed from Dubai at 4 am, but got my bags only at 10 am," said passenger Kaushik Madhvani.

This is the latest in a series of mishaps at major airports across the country. In October 2007, an Air Deccan employee, Sanskriti Sinha, was killed in a similar hit and run case at the Delhi airport.