The Winifred Gaskin road on the Wismar shore of the Demerara River in Linden, has for a number of years served the community satisfactorily in providing the most suitable route for vehicles of all form to access neighbouring communities and to go over to Mackenzie and those coming to have access to the hinterland areas and the interior.
The popularity of this road ways has brought with it many unfortunate incidents, from the minor slips of pedestrians, to the falls of cyclist and sadly, serious accidents between motor vehicles that result in severe injuries and in some cases deaths of its occupants and even the deaths of bystanders.
I pen these words out of concern and worry about the imminent danger that lingers more prominently due to the increased number of vehicles commuting this route.
I fear mostly for road users that travel during the nights. My fear is not primarily because there is poor visibility resulting from the absence of lights on most of the electricity poles along the path, nor is it because of the increased number of new, young licensed drivers. No! I am most terrified of the gigantic lumber trucks, container trucks, trailer trucks, low bed and the increased number of ‘bush trucks’ using this road at nights and the speed they exercise. These trucks and their drivers increase the potential for accidents and road fatalities on this road.
The local authorities: police, town council and region are not as proactive as they should be and their lacklustre posture and dismal interest of concern is only seen when there is loss of life on this road. These unfortunate occurrences do ignite the spur of the moment concern and response for a short period of time by these figure heads.
The last accident involving one of these trucks that caused the death of a primary school child angered residents to the point that the mayor and town council erected poles on both sides of the road with a barricade at the junction of Wisroc and Blueberry Hill. The proposed intent for this now monument structure was to be to prevent these said ‘monster’ trucks from using the Winifred Gaskin highway and to have them use the alternate route which is the Wisroc, Block 22 access road. This dream of the town council is yet to be realized. It boggles the mind to comprehend what it is they are waiting for, is it for another death of a resident?
I call on the Guyana Police Force to extend the same courtesy that was extended to residents of the East Bank Demerara community in restricting the travel of these types of trucks aforementioned on the road of interest for the residents of Wismar until these local leaders wake up from their slumber.