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Lonavala Bhushi Dam Waterfall Tragedy: Search on for Two Missing Children

Five persons, including a woman, are feared drowned in a waterfall close to the backwater of Bhushi Dam in Pune’s Lonavala area, on June 30, 2024.

The Incident

On June 30, 2024, a tragic incident occurred near the Bhushi Dam in Lonavala, Pune, where five people, including a woman, were swept away by a sudden surge of water in a waterfall. The victims were part of a larger group from Sayyad Nagar in Pune’s Hadapsar area, who had hired a private bus to visit the scenic spot for a picnic.

Immediate Aftermath

The rescue teams, comprising police, Navy divers, and other rescue teams, immediately initiated a search operation. On July 1, 2024, the search for two missing children, Adnan Sabhahat Ansari (4) and Mariya Aqil Ansari (9), resumed. The bodies of Shahista Liaqat Ansari (36), Amima Adil Ansari (13), and Umera Adil Ansari (8) had already been recovered from the reservoir downstream.

The Rescue Operation

StepDescription
Initial ResponsePolice and rescue teams arrived at the scene and began search operations.
Recovery of BodiesThe bodies of three victims were recovered from the reservoir downstream.
Ongoing SearchThe search for the two missing children continued with the help of Navy divers.
Coordination with Local AuthoritiesRescue teams worked in Coordination with Local Authorities for effective search.

Eyewitness Accounts

A heart-wrenching video of the incident showed a group of people being swept away by the gushing water, which was intensified by heavy rainfall in the region. According to witnesses, the water flow rose unexpectedly, catching the victims off guard.

Background

The family members, who were originally from Mumbai, had traveled to Pune for a wedding a few days prior to the incident. On the day of the tragedy, over 15 members hired a bus to visit Lonavala for a picnic. Despite warnings from police and local authorities about the dangers of visiting certain areas during the monsoon season, the family ventured close to the waterfall.

The Scene

AspectDescription
LocationNear Bhushi Dam, Lonavala, Pune.
Weather ConditionsIntense rainfall causing sudden surges in water flow.
Number of VisitorsAn estimated 50,000 people visited Lonavala on June 30, 2024.
Safety Warnings IgnoredDespite warnings from authorities, many visitors ventured into dangerous areas.

Rescue Teams Involved

TeamRole
PoliceCoordinated search and rescue operations.
Navy DiversConducted underwater search for missing persons.
Vanyajeev Rakshak MavalProvided support in the search and rescue efforts.
Shiv Durg Trekkers OrganisationAssisted with on-ground rescue and recovery operations.

Family’s Experience

The family members, who were part of the Ansari family, were in Lonavala to enjoy a day out in the picturesque locale. However, the sudden rise in water levels due to the intense rainfall turned the day into a nightmare. The relatives described the trip as an outing meant to enjoy the monsoon but ended in tragedy due to unforeseen natural forces.

Impact and Public Response

The incident has drawn significant public attention, highlighting the dangers of ignoring safety warnings during the monsoon season. The large number of visitors to Lonavala and surrounding areas often disregard advisories from local authorities, leading to such tragic events.

Safety Recommendations

RecommendationDetails
Adhere to Safety WarningsVisitors should always follow safety warnings and advisories issued by authorities.
Avoid Dangerous AreasStay away from areas known to be dangerous during the monsoon season.
Monitor Weather ConditionsKeep an eye on weather forecasts and avoid travel during periods of heavy rainfall.
Use Caution Near Water BodiesExercise extreme caution when near water bodies, especially during rainy seasons.

Conclusion

The Lonavala Bhushi Dam waterfall tragedy serves as a grim reminder of the power of nature and the importance of heeding safety warnings. As the search for the missing children continues, the incident underscores the need for greater awareness and precaution among tourists, particularly during the monsoon season. The local authorities and rescue teams are doing their utmost to locate the missing children and prevent such tragedies in the future.

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