General — 28 March 2014 — by Kareem Clarke

2 accidents occurred reportedly due to negligence, while the other was allegedly caused by road rage

A disturbing number of traffic accidents have occurred within the jurisdiction of the rural Belize District over the past few weeks, and this past weekend the phenomenon continued, as there were a jaw-dropping four more road traffic accidents in that municipality, leaving at least three more individuals in critical condition at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH).

One of the most serious of the incidents happened on Sunday evening after two employees of Bowen and Bowen Ltd. had left from a company function in Ladyville.

Upon reaching the curve before the Burrell Boom cutoff, the grey Jeep Cherokee that they were traveling in reportedly ran off the road and overturned several times.

The victims were 38-year-old Ian Nunez of Poinsetta Street in Belize City, and 35-year-old Deon Geban of Fabers Road, also in Belize City. Nunez suffered a broken pelvis, spine, hand and foot; while Geban was injured in the back, shoulder and foot.

Rural Executive Officer, Assistant Superintendent Christopher Noble, briefed the media about the incident, which has left the victim’s SUV extensively damaged.

“On Sunday, we did receive information of a vehicle that had overturned and two persons were injured. [It happened at] the area right before the Burrell Boom cutoff [when] traveling from Ladyville towards Burrell Boom, which is a curve. The vehicle ran off the road and may have overturned several times. There is severe damage to the vehicle. There were at least two persons [who] were inside the vehicle [and] they were assisted by ambulance personnel,” stated Noble.

ASP Noble was thankful for the assistance which was provided by the military’s medical officers, but he also took the opportunity to scold careless drivers who practice negligence on the roadways, especially in the rural areas.

He said, “The military did send out their ambulance because we do have [a] good working relationship with them. But even if we have the working relationship, it is never one that you [constantly] want to call upon because there is a high level of carelessness sometimes on the part of the drivers. I keep saying be careful, be cautious.”

Noble remarked that, in his opinion, if the operator of the vehicle had been more cautious, the occupants would have both saved themselves from the agony of the injuries that they have suffered.

That incident is one of four traffic mishaps that Ladyville police were compelled to respond to, and today, Noble told the media about the others while declaring that the authorities within the rural areas are currently on an operation to crack down on those who run afoul of traffic laws.

“We had another traffic mishap where Saturday night, sometime after 7:00 p.m., 2 vehicles were involved in a minor accident. The vehicles were extensively damaged in the area of Mile 11 – that is where El Cas used to be. The injuries were very minimal, thankfully, but again, vehicles and lives continue to be disrupted by these accidents”, mentioned ASP Noble.

He added, “There was another traffic mishap that had occurred in the area near the Crooked Tree junction. Both parties have come in [to the police station] and we did record that traffic mishap. It is minor; however, some part of it may be attributed to road rage. We are hoping that that is not the case, but drivers again need to be very cautious and sometimes the speed you drive may not necessarily be the speed that you can control.”

In an effort to deter the massive spike in traffic accidents within the precincts of their region recently, the Rural Executive Officer announced that Ladyville police are amplifying their patrols on the northern road to try to deal with reckless drivers who put people’s lives at risk.

Since the start of March, there have been an alarming 10 traffic fatalities across Belize, 6 of which happened on the Philip Goldson Highway in the jurisdiction of the Ladyville Police.

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