(Trinidad Express) Two women died today in a crash in Chaguanas involving a garbage truck, a Blue Waters delivery truck and a Public Transport Service Corporation (PTSC) deluxe coach bus.
Dead are Tara Baboolal,, 66, of Congo Village, Debe and Judy Marcia Reid Clarke, 61, of Diego Martin.
The women were aboard the bus.
A third passenger is listed in critical condition.
Police say the garage truck was heading south along the Uriah Butler Highway, when in the vicinity of Charlieville, a tyre blew out.
The garage truck hit the Blue Waters delivery truck, spilling the cargo on the highway.
The Blue Waters Truck crossed the median and hit the bus which was heading into Port of Spain.
There were multiple injuries. Some of the injured were taken to the Mt Hope Hospital. Others were transferred to San Fernando.
President of Arrive Alive Sharon Inglefield said she was disheartened to learn of yet more road fatalities.
In a message to the Express, Inglefield said the lack of highway barriers is contributing significantly to fatal collisions.
She extended condolences to the families of those who lost their lives.
“Sincere condolences to the families with regards to this needleless loss of life. We are so sorry for your loss.
The lack of barriers contribute to the serious collisions and carnage on our nation’s roads. What will it take to get our leaders to understand that upgrading our road network to three-star standard is critical to saving lives” said Inglefield.
Grandmother Tara Baboolal was not supposed to be on that bus today.
Last week she was supposed to go into Port of Spain to conduct a land transaction because in 2019, this kind of business can only be done at the Inland Revenue office in the Capital.
However, her documents were not in order so she had to delay her trip to today.
She travelled from her Debe home into San Fernando at 7a.m., and got on the PTSC Deluxe Coach at Kings Wharf.
Baboolal, as a pensioner, travelled for free.
The bus headed north along the highway with more than 50 passengers.
Baboolal, of Congo Village, Ramai Trace, Debe, was sitting up front near the driver on the right side.
She suffered mortal injuries when the bus was hit by a Blue Waters cargo truck that came across from the opposite side of the highway near Charlieville at around 10.30a.m. The cargo truck lost control after being hit by a garbage truck that careened out of control when a tyre blew out, police say.
Baboolal, a 65-year-old mother of four and grandmother of seven, was a housewife and lived with her husband Ramdial, 70, and grandchildren.
Her granddaughter Rianna Baboolal told the Express that the last thing her grandmother did was prepare sandwiches to take into Port of Spain so she wouldn’t have to purchase lunch.
Rianna, 18, said she asked her grandmother for a sandwich.
The granddaughter said her grandmother was a quarrelsome but loving woman who was well known in the village and devout Hindus.
The granddaughter said that the blow out of the tire on the garbage truck that triggered the crash, was avoidable.
She said that companies needed to ensure that all vehicles in their fleet were roadworthy and drivers needed to be careful.