Tuesday 25 September, 2018

Two more bike riders perish in crashes in Westmoreland

File photo

File photo

Westmoreland has again been placed under the spotlight, with reports emerging of more fatal crashes involving motorcycle operators there.

Two men are dead following separate motorcycle collisions within a 24-hour span in the parish.

In the first incident that took place in the Morgan’s Bridge area of the parish at about 9:10 a.m. on Friday, a 21-year-old man identified as Jevon Campbell was crushed to death when the motorcycle he was driving crashed into a Toyota Fielder motorcar. 

Reports are that the vehicles were travelling in opposite directions when the bike rider failed to keep on the left side of the road and drifted into the path of the car, and was struck down.

A few hours after that incident, the police were called to the Nompriel main road in Negril, where another motorcyclist had died in a collision.

Reports are that similar to the incident in Morgan’s Bridge, the driver of the motorcycle collided with a motorcar that was going in the opposite direction.

Up to press time, the name of the deceased had still not been released by the police.

Reports of the deaths come just weeks after the police advised of having launched an all-parish campaign calling on the users of motorcycles to exercise greater caution on the roadways.

Hundreds of seized motorbikes at a pound in Savanna-la-Mar, Westmoreland.

Head of the Westmoreland Police Division, Superintendent Gary McKenzie, told Loop News that over the past three weeks the police have seized a total of 10 motorcycles from operators who were not adhering to road regulations or travelling without proper safety gear.

In a recent visit to the parish, a Loop News team observed that relatively few bike operators across the parish travelled with helmets.

Helmets and side mirrors were noticeably missing among most bike activities during Loop News' recent visit to the parish of Westmoreland.

Similarly, the police said many of the operators have no legitimate papers for the vehicles they drive, despite using these in many cases to transport passengers in the ‘bike taxi’ business.

As a consequence, the cops directed the Loop News team to a location in the parish capital, Savanna-la-Mar, where hundreds of seized bikes were seen impounded.

However, the police noted the problem where bikers fail to correct the shortcomings with their units and the attendant paperwork for them, opting instead to simply get and operate other illegitimate bikes once their units are seized by the police.

Additionally, both the police and residents acknowledged there is wanton bike stunting and virtual partying on roadways across the parish by some bikers, who seem to relish daredevil challenges and practices.

In May of this year, in a reported stunt that went totally off script, four persons died in a single collision that involved two motorbikes.

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