A vehicular collision along the Bee Hive Public Road, East Coast Demerara, claimed the lives of two young persons on Sunday.

Dead are cousins Satyanand Harripersaud, called ‘Avin,’ 27, of 97 Cane Grove, East Coast Demerara and Vashmi Khemraj, called ‘Shelly,’ 18, of 990 New Area, Canefield, East Canje Berbice, who had been proceeding east along the road in a car, PSS 9153, which collided with another vehicle.

Following the collision, which occurred around 10.15 pm, both Harripersaud and Khemraj were reportedly trapped in their vehicle, which landed in a nearby canal. They were both wearing seatbelts and the windows were rolled up. They were subsequently pulled from the vehicle by passersby and rushed to the Mahaicony Hospital, where they were pronounced dead on arrival. Khemraj reportedly died on the spot.

Harripersaud’s car, PSS 9153, after the accident

The police, in a press statement, said enquiries disclosed that Harripersaud was proceeding east along the northern carriageway of the road and motor car PTT 5270, driven by a 24-year-old resident of Atlantic Gardens, East Coast Demerara, was proceeding in the opposite direction.

“The driver of PTT 5270 alleged that the other vehicle (PSS 9153) suddenly swerved into his path and collided with the front right side of his vehicle after which it careened north into a canal,” the statement noted.

Divisional Commander Leslie James yesterday told Stabroek News that the driver of PTT 5270 was taken into custody following the accident. James, who noted that the investigation is still ongoing, said that the driver was expected to be released on station bail yesterday afternoon.

A breathalyser test was conducted and no alcohol was detected on the driver’s breath, the police confirmed.

Relatives yesterday told Stabroek News that Harripersaud and Khemraj and another family member, Razena (only name given), and Razena’s neighbour, left home on Sunday for an afternoon lime at the K&K Service Station, located at Unity, Mahaica.

However, after spending sometime there, Harripersaud and Khemraj decided to go to a nearby Chinese restaurant to purchase food, while Razena and her neighbour chose to stay at the service station. It was while they were on their way to the restaurant that the accident occurred.

Shanta Latchman, an aunt of the two deceased, said Khemraj had been staying at her home for about two months since she wanted to spend time with her [Latchman’s] daughter, Razena, who only recently wrote her CSEC examinations.

She said Harripersaud, on the other hand, only returned to Guyana on Saturday following a vacation.

“Actually they went K&K and when they finish now, they was going fuh have some food at a Chinese. So my daughter (Razena) said she didn’t hungry, so she [Khemraj] and my husband nephew [Harripersaud] went and I don’t know if they was turning back or what but I get to understand that a car hit them and they run in this sideline and actually when they run in there, because there is no scratch, no bruise [on their bodies], they drown in the sideline,” Latchman explained.

Latchman said after the news of the accident spread, she and other family members rushed to the scene and upon arrival they learnt that Harripersaud and Khemraj had already died.

Meanwhile, Khemraj’s mother, Radhica Bholanath, was still trying to come to grips with her daughter’s death yesterday.

Bholanath explained to this newspaper that it had been more than one month since Khemraj had been staying at her sister’s place.

She said she learnt of the accident around midnight Sunday, by which time her daughter was already dead.

The grieving mother said she usually talked with Khemraj every day although she was staying at her aunt. “Every day meh does talk to she. Every day. She call up to Saturday afternoon. She call fuh tell meh that how she ah come today. Every day me and she does talk,” she said.

The bodies of Harripersaud and Khemraj are currently at the Lyken Funeral Home awaiting autopsies, which are scheduled to be conducted sometime this week.

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