LETTER OF THE DAY - Dangerous practice by the road-network authorities
The Editor, Sir:
I have noticed that it has become the norm for road repairs to be done without any media advisory, much less a sign to warn the motoring public that roadwork is taking place in a specific location.
I was appalled recently when on my way from Old Harbour to Kingston, I came off the toll road about 9 p.m. to find roadwork taking place on the Mandela Highway and patches of road that had been dug up to effect repairs. There were absolutely no signs or flagmen posted on this major thoroughfare to indicate to the motoring public that roadwork was being done. I had to hit those dug-out sections before I noticed that road repairs were being effected.
I can remember that my first and only serious accident was because of this very same situation, where work was being done on the roads in the Perkins Boulevard area and there were no signs indicating this. I picked up a skid after hitting the sections dug up by the authorities, and I suffered serious damage to my car with no one to turn to for assistance but my insurance company.
On the morning of Friday, November 22, I was driving to Spanish Town on the Mandela Highway, only to notice that the road was again dug up without any signs posted to warn the motoring public. This time around, I suffered a damaged tyre because of the trenches that had been dug up. Saturday, November 23, again on my way to a funeral in Old Harbour from Kingston, the traffic was horrendous because road repairs were being effected on the Mandela Highway and I had not seen or heard any news in the media informing the public of the work being done.
It took me one hour to get from the boulevard to the exit of the 'Usain Bolt Highway'. I almost missed the entire funeral.
I must say that we appreciate the fact that the authorities are trying to repair the roads damaged by the rains from Tropical Storm Nicole, but they should not be competing with the craters that are already on our roads by digging up the road without any warning to the motoring public. It's the duty of the authorities to ensure that the roads being repaired are clearly advertised in the media so that persons can avoid these areas if possible, and signs must be clearly posted for the motoring public so that the necessary precautions are taken.
The authorities need to respect the lives and business of the motoring public and not wait until something tragic happens before we start remedying the situation.
I am, etc.,