Accident in Gojal and chaos at Gulmit Hospital

Kamran Ahmad

The recent accident in Gojal Valley that left nine people dead and several critically injured, has blanketed our villages in an air of gloom. It also made us realize that we never know how much time we`ll have.

What keeps coming back to my mind is the image of THQ Hospital, Gulmit. I saw one ambulance and some private vehicles carrying the victims from the accident site to the hospital.

Inside the hospital, the scene was extremely hysterical. Two wards were packed with the accident victims and they were bleeding and desperately fighting for life. I was shocked when I saw only one doctor who was running from one victim to another and then another. Even that doctor was not on payroll of the hospital, but was helping out voluntarily.

I also saw two soldiers, who are on vacations in Gulmit, helping out the hospital staff. They were very skillfully and without panic providing first aid to the victims.“Pass me a cannula,” the doctor screamed out, I clearly remember. But people out there had no idea of what cannula means.

“Give me a plaster,” the doctor screamed out again. But, it was really painful when the hospital staff announced that they don’t have plaster.

Despite all the limitations, the doctor, the hospital staff and all other volunteers fought their level best to save as many lives as possible.

More painful was the moment when all the fractured, bleeding and swollen victims were being shifted for surgery to Aliabad and Gilgit by boats.

This tragedy has reinforced the need for surgeon, doctors, nurses and a fully equipped hospital in Gojal. Besides, our volunteers and boy scouts need to be trained in provision of first aid.

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