The driver of a school van was swept away in a swollen nullah while saving the lives of four school children near Virar, police said today. Heavy rains lashed Palghar and Thane districts over the last two days. Prakash Patil (40), a school van driver, drowned in a flooded nullah (rivulet) at Narangi near Virar in Palghar yesterday, said an official of Arnala marine police station. Patil, who ferried students from Parole in Vasai to a school in Virar (West), was transferring children to another vehicle after his van broke down near a flooded rivulet, officials said. Four of the boys lost their balance while crossing the road. Patil saved them from drowning, but was swept away himself, police said. In another incident, Vijay Pawar (10) drowned after falling into a nullah at Kalwa in Thane district, police said.