Driver es­capes as truck top­ples into ravine along Lin­den-Lethem trail

Stabroek News Sunday - - REGIONAL NEWS -

A driver es­caped al­most cer­tain death along the Lin­den-Lethem Trail on Fri­day when his truck top­pled into a ravine close to the Ku­rupukari Cross­ing.

The ac­ci­dent oc­curred while the driver of the truck, bear­ing li­cence plate GWW 5832, at­tempted to cross a bridge known as Christ­mas Bridge.

It was dur­ing his at­tempt that the lum­ber-laden truck top­pled side­ways into the ravine, forc­ing the driver to jump out of the truck’s cabin to es­cape.

Sun­day Stabroek was un­able to iden­tify the driver but was told that he sus­tained in­juries to his back and re­quired med­i­cal at­ten­tion.

The ac­ci­dent was doc­u­mented in pic­tures and videos that were shared on so­cial me­dia, which prompted calls for gov­ern­ment to look into the rehabilitation of the trail, es­pe­cially since the rainy sea­son has re­duced it to slush.

One driver who spoke with Sun­day Stabroek shared his frus­tra­tion at having to tra­verse the road, say­ing that he like many oth­ers feels “the pressure” al­most ev­ery time he sets out to use it.

He iden­ti­fied the area where the Christ­mas Bridge and the Fair View Hill are lo­cated as a trou­ble spot since many buses have found them­selves stuck, while at­tempt­ing to ma­noeu­vre along the road.

He fur­ther ex­plained that it has got­ten so bad that the Fair View Vil­lage truck is be­ing of­fered for tow­ing ser­vices to driv­ers who would have got­ten stuck in the slush. Those who are not as for­tu­nate to ben­e­fit from the tow truck ser­vice, some­times spend hours dig­ging their buses out of the slush.

The tow­ing ser­vice, the driver said, comes at a cost of $2,000, which is an ad­di­tion to the al­ready long list of ex­penses driv­ers in­cur while having to deal with the cur­rent state of the road.

Calls have also been made for some kind of in­ter­ven­tion to be made re­gard­ing heavy duty trucks travers­ing the trails, since ac­cord­ing to some, they con­tinue to con­trib­ute to its de­struc­tion.

Sim­i­lar calls have been made over the years, par­tic­u­larly dur­ing the rainy sea­son, when the de­te­ri­o­ra­tion of the road re­sults in what is usu­ally a 12-hour-long jour­ney tak­ing 20 hours or more.

Pres­i­dent David Granger, dur­ing a state visit to Brazil in De­cem­ber, 2017 had signed a Com­ple­men­tary Agree­ment to the Me­moran­dum of Un­der­stand­ing between the two coun­tries which cre­ates the “Guyana-Brazil Joint Com­mis­sion to De­velop In­fras­truc­ture Projects.” The con­struc­tion of the long-awaited Lin­den-Lethem road is said to be one of the key projects un­der this agree­ment.

The Depart­ment of Pub­lic In­for­ma­tion, in a re­port, had quoted Granger as having said that for decades both sides en­vis­aged a route through Guyana, which will of­fer bet­ter de­vel­op­ment prospects for in­vestors to come from the Caribbean into Brazil and from Brazil into the Caribbean. The truck driver af­ter he man­aged to es­cape from the cabin be­fore the ve­hi­cle top­pled into the ravine.

Sec­tions of the bridge, known as Christ­mas Bridge, were dam­aged fol­low­ing Fri­day’s ac­ci­dent.

The truck, with lum­ber still tied to it, af­ter it top­pled into the ravine fol­low­ing at­tempts by its driver to cross the Christ­mas Bridge along the Lin­den-Lethem trail on Fri­day.

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