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Govt rakes in $16 million in speeding tickets
As motorists are forced to fork out $16 million for speeding violations, police have also recorded a slight increase in road deaths in 2018.
In an update on road traffic safety yesterday, Senior Supt Basdeo Ramdhanie said that 40 people have died in 38 road traffic accidents up to yesterday as compared to 39 deaths from 36 road traffic accidents for the same period last year.
Although there was a 40 per cent decrease in deaths along the major highways, Ramdhanie said that excessive speeding continues to be one of the main contributors to fatal and serious road traffic accidents. Of the 15,928 speeding tickets issued, 35 per cent was given out by the Traffic and Highway Patrol Speed Teams while the remainder came from the Divisional Speed Teams along main roads.
Recalling two fatal accidents over the weekend, Ramdhanie said that it was extremely upsetting because they were preventable. Around 1 am on Sunday, Jordan McCarthy, 29, was killed after his vehicle crashed into another that was heading in the opposite direction along the Western Main Road, Carenage. Three hours later, another accident occurred when a motorist breached a traffic light signal at an intersection along the Southern Main Road, Curepe.
“What is extremely upsetting, is the high level of preventability involved in both of these incidents. The TTPS wishes to express our sincerest condolences to the families of the victims and remind all road users of the serious responsibility involved in road use. We wish to remind drivers who are in the first vehicle at Traffic Light Controlled intersections, to wait three to four seconds before moving off with a green light to ensure the intersection is clear.
Do this even if it causes the driver behind to sound the horn. Remember you are the most at risk moving off first from the light,” Ramdhanie said.
Touching on other issues of road safety, he said that 996 drivers have been arrested and charged with drunk driving for 2018. He recalled that last Friday, Highway Patrol officers arrested and charged a motorist for drunk driving along the Uriah Butler Highway. Police received a report of a pick-up driving dangerously and intercepted in Chaguanas. When the driver was submitted to a breathalyser test, he was found to have a breath alcohol level of 92 microgrammes per 100 millilitres of breath; 57 microgrammes over the legal limit of 35 microgrammes. A background check of the driver revealed that it was his fourth DUI charge. He appeared before a Chaguanas Magistrate on Monday and after pleading not guilty to the offence, the matter was adjourned to May 22.
“Again, we continue to advise drivers not to consume alcohol if they are driving. The fact that this driver managed to be caught four times for the offence indicates a high level of offence detection on the roadways by law enforcement.
Utilising taxis, calling friends or family and ride sharing options are always the best alternatives to taking the chance of driving under the influence of alcohol.”
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