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Over 200 traffic accidents to date as public advised to observe road regulations

GIS - Tuesday, March 20th, 2012 at 7:54 PM

Firefighters on the scene of an accident. * File photo

Monday, March 19 – Motorists and pedestrians are being advised to adhere to the rules of the road in light of startling statistics.

By observing the road safety rules, speed limits, conditions of the roads, and other precautions, drivers can avoid being involved in hazardous traffic situations. If a driver realizes that they are incapable of being a responsible driver, that driver should refrain from operating a motor vehicle.

Concerns for the motoring public are mounting as traffic accidents continue to rise. According to the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, 243 traffic accidents have been recorded to date.

One accident in particular occurred on March 13 in the vicinity of Government House on Waterfront Drive where the Fire and Rescue Services Department had to rescue a trapped individual.

According to Acting Chief Fire Officer, Mr. William Penn, the collision which occurred at Water Front Drive involved a Brown Chevrolet 1500 Pickup truck which contained two occupants at the time of the accident.

The male driver of the vehicle was trapped and immobilized. The Fire and Rescue Services Department freed the man using the Jaws of Life. The female passenger was reportedly escorted to the hospital before the arrival of the VI Fire Services.

A similar incident was reported March 14 in Setting Point, Anegada where vehicle occupant, lost control of the vehicle while driving. The vehicle ran off the road and collided into an electrical pole. No injury was reported.

Motorists are advised not to drive while, drunk, sleepy or impaired, in these instances the best option is to designate a driver or seek another source of transportation.

For pedestrians, when crossing use cross walks, in the absence of a cross walk, cross where the area is illuminated and always look both ways before crossing.

Government is committed to enhancing driver and pedestrian safety in compliance with the road traffic legislation of the Territory.

This article was posted in its entirety as received by bvinews.com. This media house does not correct any spelling or grammatical error within press releases and commentaries. The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of bvinews.com, its sponsors or advertisers.



9 Comments

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  1. E. Leonard
    March 21, 2012
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    243 accididents in 81 days is an alarming rate. At this rate, if my math is correct, we will record approximately 1095 accidents for 2012. In any event regardless of what the final numbers are they will be too high. Further, with a population of approximately 30,000 and approximately 13,000 vehicles these are not great stats. This is a critical public health and safety issue that needs urgent attention.

    Though all the accidents may be good business for automechanics, and collision repair shops, all the avoidable accidents exacts a high cost on the community. Avoidable accidents burden the health system, drive up insurance rates, require precious police time to investigation ….etc. Additionally avoidable accidents can result in serious life threatning injuries with long recuperation time, loss work time, large out of pocket medical costs, loss wages….etc. And they potentially could result in a fatality. The accident rate is alarming so what do we do other than issue citations and advise motorists to adhere to rules of the road?

    This is a serious and costly national issue. As such, we need to not only treat the symptoms but also find and root out the cause(s) of the avoidable accidents. Need an adhoc committee to look at the cause and effect of the high accident rate and develop recommendations. At the very least, there needs to be more aggressive enforcement of traffic laws, rules, and regulations. Moreover, there needs to be a public education and outreach programme to brief the community on the true cost of accidents. What is the drag on GDP?

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  2. Work smarter
    March 20, 2012
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    The public needs to be reminded that they are required to comply with traffic laws, not advised (which implies discretion).

    This year 200 accidents in fewer than 100 days, two years ago the number was 300 in about twice as many days. Anyone else notice a pattern?

    Stiff penalties, with suspension or removal of driving privileges and enforcement of laws are what is required since leaving compliance to drivers’ discretion has clearly failed in the BVIs.

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  3. No enforcement
    March 20, 2012
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    Let’s face it, in the absence of enforcement there are no traffic laws.

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  4. samsu
    March 20, 2012
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    Merge the DMV and the Police Traffic only for the sharing of information and data. I could see the Police with a laptop with the driver’s license information and the Insurance records, in their vehicle, of each and every driver on the public road. Just like when the Duke was here place police officers at major intersections during peak hour traffic. Enforce consistently the fine for persons who run red lights at intersections. Enforce traffic offences in the districts and not only in Road Town. Increase the penalty for killing someone with a vehicle. Place more (white) yellow lines in the middle of the road. Mandatory driver education classes for repeat offenders of serious traffic crimes. Enforce mandatory removal of blue lights from vehicles. Spot check vehicles for break light malfunction. Increase the penalty for leaving the scene of a vehicle accident before the police arrive. Stop insurance companies from settling with the other party before the court case is competed. Have a regular traffic awareness campaign to sensitize the public to the various offenses and the danger of disobeying the traffic rules. Increase the traffic fines when an accident occurs in an area where Solid Waste, BVIEC or PWD workers are working.

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  5. Too little too late
    March 20, 2012
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    One trip to Road Town: three trucks stop suddenly three separate time, not pulling over, to talk or pick up someone; two safari buses overtake on blind curve; one oncoming cement truck across center line forces me into shoulder, and driver behind me passes at the same time; pedestrians cross oncoming traffic, not in crosswalk. Three boys on scooters overtake from the inside. This one simple trip required defensive driving every second. Not only exhausting, but hair-
    raising! We wonder why there are accidents?

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  6. Ray
    March 20, 2012
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    Not too long ago, I had a disturbing conversation with a friend while driving. We were driving into town, and upon getting into the vehicle, I placed my seat belt on as I naturally do, and they did not. I asked why they did not buckle up, and they proceeded to tell me that they only put on their seat belt when they are approaching town to avoid getting the ticket. I was dumbfounded.

    Being the kind of person who cares about my friends, I strongly suggested to my friend that they should buckle up and not look at wearing seat belts as a way to avoid getting a ticket but rather to potentially save their lives or avoid serious injuries in the event of an accident. They subsequently relented, and buckled up. As we drove along, I could not help but wonder if there are other persons out there with a similar thinking.

    In light of this report, if there are any other persons out there with a similar mindset as my friend, please buckle up. It can save your life.

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  7. Logical
    March 20, 2012
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    The Police and insurance companies must work together to bring this alarming situation under control.
    1st. Increase surveillance cameras, specially at the traffic lights and fine people who break the law. Install Speed cameras at known speed areas and fine people.
    2nd. Insurance companies must start increasing insurance rates on people who have accidents or moving violations (Speeding, Driving through Red Light)
    3rd. Suspend driver’s licenses of those who are repeat offenders.
    4th. Impose jail sentences on drivers involved in an accident that results in bodily injury

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    • Known speed areas?
      March 20, 2012
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      that would mean traffic cameras on every piece of road!

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  8. S.R.
    March 20, 2012
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    The accidents won’t stop until the police take a TOUGH position on obeying the laws. Each person says”if he can do that, so can I” and the disobeadience escalates!!! Police; GET NASTY WITH THE TICKET BOOK!!!!!

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