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Senate laments Wisynco fire, road carnage

Published:Friday | May 27, 2016 | 1:07 PMGary Spaulding
KD Knight

The fire at the Wisynco factory in St Catherine yesterday ignited the anguish of the Senate even as lawmakers registered their despair with the carnage on the road.

Veteran legislator, Opposition Senator K.D. Knight sought to jolt his colleagues to activate an action plan against the road carnage that has already claimed 149 lives since the start of the year.

"It is incumbent on each of us to go out there and see what we can do to educate the public on that," said Knight.

Wisynco fire

Leader of Government Business in the Senate Kamina Johnson Smith raised the matter of the mass fire at Wisynco on the motion for adjournment.

"I wish to note that on behalf of members on this side and, quite likely, on the other side as well, to say how sorry we are about the fire and how members of staff (of Gordon House) were affected by the traffic generated, and several persons otherwise were affected as well," said Johnson Smith.

She said that the workers at the facility were concerned about the situation at the company which is a great contributor to the Jamaican economy.

"We are sure they (the workers) will be resilient, but we just wish to note our concern for the tragedy and hope that they will rebound very quickly, with the least possible impact," said Johnson Smith

Said Knight, in response: "We on this side associate ourselves and we are sure that Wisynco, like the phoenix, will rise."

Road carnage frightening

Commenting further on the troubling issue of road carnage, Knight said, "There is something that is frightening - one in Portmore and one in St Ann - and I understand that the probability is that several lives have been lost."

He added that motorists should slow down on the streets and desist from speeding around corners.

Knight said that he spoke with one such driver some years ago. "There was this driver who was driving more on the right. I was in the vehicle and I said to him, 'Why are you driving on the right'?"

According to Knight, the driver responded: "Boss, if anything a come, me have space to move over on the left."

Making reference to Government Senator Sapphire Longmore, Knight said: "A medical doctor is in the Senate and I know you must be distressed because of the trauma cases that you have to contend with," to which Longmore responded: "Very much so."

Said Knight: "Let us all take it as individual and collective responsibility to see what we can do to help educate drivers, pedestrians, and other road users that safety makes sense."