Thu | Dec 9, 2021

National man-made disasters

Published:Sunday | May 24, 2015 | 11:18 AM


For our size, we already have a record for carnage in our households by use of the gun, so it should come as no surprise that we also have the dubious record for deaths on our roads by the second deadliest invention of mankind - the motor vehicle.

All our pleas have fallen on deaf ears. The police has revealed that in the first 100 days of this year, there have been 102 deaths on our roads - more than one per day - and all pleas and campaigns about these statistics have had no effect, and why? Because they are just statistics and most of us have not witnessed one of these accidents.

I am, therefore, making an appeal to the police, with the aid of the Jamaica Information Service, to produce a film depicting the accident scenes as well as images of the victims, before and after the accident.

I am hopeful that the bereaved families of accidents selected to be re-enacted may find some comfort in the fact that such a film may prevent the loss of life of others; but if they prefer not, their wishes must be respected.

The television stations should seek sponsorship for the production of such films so that these images will come flooding back to all drivers every time they pick up their car keys, and begin to appreciate why the motor vehicle is second only to the gun as a weapon of destruction.

The second most alarming aspect is the epidemic of motorcycles 'swarming' our roads. That is bad enough, but the situation is aggravated by the mind-boggling percentage of these motorcyclists who wear no helmets at all, or if they do, their passengers (usually female or children) do not.

The police should, therefore, go back to source and ensure that all motorcycle owners be required to purchase two helmets and the extra one must be carried on the motorcycle at all times.

To make matters worse, on our streets, be they rural or urban, this already acknowledged dangerous weapon is operated by, among others, taxi or minibus drivers who have single-handedly re-written the road code by virtue of the fact that they never heard of it.

Howard Hamilton