Teen dies after truck mishap along Lethem trail

-heavy traffic now barred

The son of a popular Lethem businessman is now dead after the truck in which he was travelling crashed while crossing a bridge, a few miles from the Surama junction, along the road to Lethem early yesterday morning.

Dead is Yusir Khan, who is said to be in his late teens. He was reportedly driving the truck, which was carrying stock, when the accident occurred. Another man, who was in the truck at the time of the accident, had to be hospitalized after he sustained serious injuries.

The accident occurred about 48 miles from the Kurupukari Crossing, close to the Iwokrama Reserve area, this newspaper was told. The bridge, which collapsed, is located about 3 miles from the bridge at the Surama junction. A resident from Lethem told this newspaper last evening that the accident had occurred before “the bad patch” of road.

Police from the border community were dispatched to the area to investigate yesterday, this newspaper was told.

Khan’s father, Roy Khan, this newspaper was told, owns two business establishments—one in Lethem and one in Annai. Reports are that the establishment in Lethem has been closed for the past two weeks due to the shortage of rations. Heavy rains had made the Lethem trail impassable to larger vehicles and the problem was later compounded by heavy flooding in the upper Essequibo region.

A bus driver, who plies the Georgetown/Lethem trail, told this newspaper last evening that traffic along the trail had been stalled all of yesterday. 

Meanwhile, last evening, the Ministry of Public Works’ Works Services Group, through the Government Information Agency (GINA), issued a statement “advising the public about the closure of the Kurupukari to Surama portion of the Linden to Lethem trail to heavy traffic” until further notice.

“The closure is due to accidents and damage to two bridges at Moco Moco, 27 kilometres South of the Kurupukari crossing on the Essequibo River in the Iwokrama Forest and the bridge at the Surama junction further South,” the release added.  The release noted that a repair programme with contractors from Lethem is underway.

In mid-June, the Ministry had advised the public about weight limit restrictions on the Linden to Lethem trail, given road conditions due to inclement weather. “These restrictions are still in effect,” the release added.

A Lethem resident told this newspaper that over the weekend a jeep transporting two persons overturned at the Moco Moco bridge. Both the persons who were travelling in the vehicle at the time are currently at the hospital in Lethem. The resident was unable to pronounce on the damage done to the bridge in the area.

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