-construction work, bad parking endangering pedestrians
A 46-year-old man died late Saturday night after he was hit by a truck while walking along the Soesdyke Public Road, East Bank Demerara near a bridge which is currently under construction.
The driver of the truck (GLL 8640) is currently in custody at the Timehri Police Station and the vehicle is also being held in the station compound. The man is expected to be charged shortly.
Clayton Marshall, who lived opposite the Soesdyke Methodist Church on the Public Road, was returning home sometime after 10 pm. The man, according to an eyewitness, had just approached the bridge when the truck slammed into him.
“I saw him walk by here,” the witness recalled, “and next thing I hear is wap-wap and I saw his hat fly back in front here but I didn’t see him. A little bit after I saw him on the corner of the road lying face down…I think he died instantly from that hit.”
Because of the bridge construction, the witness said, only the western carriageway is open to traffic along the small stretch of road. The carriageway, they said, is made narrower when patrons of a bar located in front of the bridge park along the road.
“Saturday night it had a set of vehicles parked outside this bar and so even if Clayton wanted to jump away from that speeding truck then he woulda had nowhere to go,” the witness said.
Several residents said that most times during the day there is a traffic policeman monitoring the flow of vehicles at the bridge. However, because of the busy nature of the road some night time monitoring is needed as well.
“Because this is the only way to get to the airport (Cheddi Jagan International Airport),” one resident said, “these vehicles are always speeding and there is hardly any ease in the traffic. This is the first serious accident that has happened here since they started doing over this bridge and if something isn’t done it won’t be the last.”
After the incident Marshall was rushed to the Diamond Diagnostic Centre where he was pronounced dead on arrival. His body is currently at the Lyken’s Funeral Parlour. The man, a neighbour said, lived alone.
His children, according to the neighbour, live with their mother along the East Coast of Demerara.
“I am not sure if his family knows what happened,” the neighbour said, “and we don’t know how to contact them.”
The woman said that the man and her father were close friends. Marshall would normally be at their house for extended periods of time. On Saturday, she said, Marshall had spent most of the day with them. “I last saw him just after 6 that evening just before I left to come to Georgetown,” she recalled. “He was such a nice man. A good person.”
It was sometime after 10 pm, she recalled, when her mother called to tell her that she had “sad news”.
“I just couldn’t believe it when she told me he [Marshall] had died…for weeks now we’ve been saying how dangerous that stretch of road is and only now that someone has died will something be done to monitor the situation,” she said.