Mon | Jul 23, 2018

Letter of the day | Blame reckless drivers for Flat Bridge mishaps

Published:Monday | July 25, 2016 | 12:00 AM


The Road Safety Unit has reported that 219 people have died in road accidents as at July 21, 2016. This should be of grave concern for all stakeholders and we must find ways to inhibit the madness on the roads.

I note the horrendous story 'Tragedy!' Gleaner, July 17, 2016) that six people died in the Rio Cobre after the vehicle in which they were travelling ran off the Flat Bridge.

The sub-officer in charge of traffic at the St Catherine North Division, Sergeant Donovan Barnes, was quoted as saying: "The information we received was that the driver overtook a truck, the light was changing from amber to red, and he was trying to beat the red when he lost control of the vehicle and it went into the water."

Now, I can't imagine a sane and disciplined driver who respects his own life, and that of others, who would overtake on such a narrow and treacherous structure like the Flat Bridge, with the hope of beating the traffic signal.

When the passengers saw that the driver was attempting to overtake a truck, or a line of traffic as other media have reported, did anyone assert their discomfort to him?

What was troubling were reports that the driver did not have a licence.

The Flat Bridge has been in existence since the 18th century, built by slaves in 1774. It has been a source of dread with many plunging to their deaths because of reckless drivers.

Technocrats conclude that there is not much that can be done to restructure the bridge, but that has not stopped the calls for it to be properly secured.

A responsible person knows that prudence, defensive driving and respect for the law are required when traversing the roadways.

Instead of blaming the Flat Bridge or any other structure, blame the imprudent drivers.