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BWU Appeals for Caution on the Roads

The Executive Council of the Barbados Workers’ Union, at this the start of 2018, is appealing to the people of Barbados to display far more care and attention on the streets of Barbados with a view to halting the needless injuries and untimely deaths that result from reckless driving by motorists and cyclists.

The B.W.U. emphasises that the news clippings in the mass media of communications about accidents, whether vehicular, or worksite, which show the police, fire service and ambulance personnel in action, only represent the tip of the iceberg, since there are far weightier outcomes. Noting that some 28 deaths were recorded on the streets of Barbados in the year 2017, when compared to 10 in the year 2016, the B.W.U. emphasises that traffic accidents and deaths are extremely costly, not only in regard to the emotional shock and financial burdens which are imposed on the families and the friends of those who are injured and/or killed; they are also burdensome to the national economy when one takes into consideration the weighty pressures that are placed on the police, the ambulance service, the hospital, in addition to the costs of medical services, insurance and the loss of earnings to the individuals, their families and their workplaces.

The B.W.U. adds that, apart from the speed and reckless driving, there is also the issue of some motorists presenting the danger to oncoming motorists during the night by the intensity of the brightness of their head lamps.

Notwithstanding the daily appeals for order on the streets by the Police, the Ministry of Transport and road safety associations, one cannot but decry the reckless approach adopted by some motorists who drive at high speeds, not only on the highways, but in housing developments and villages where one would expect children to be engaged in play and senior citizens in recreation.

The B.W.U. has advised those who use the highways as a circus for displaying stunts that they may not only be breaking the law and endangering their own lives, but that they may also be putting at risk the lives of others, in addition to making themselves a public nuisance.

The B.W.U., at this the commencement of a new year, appeals for greater sensitivity by the drivers of private motor vehicles, motor cyclists as well as those who ply their trade on the streets, whether they are the drivers of public service vehicles, vans used by food vendors, or delivery vans. We need an-all-of- Barbados approach to bring back some form of reason and normalcy to the way we behave as a people.