ZR overturns

Schoolgirls hospitalized in serious condition

What started out as a usual ride from school by close to a dozen Springer Memorial students ended in near tragedy earlier this afternoon after the public service vehicle they were travelling in 

The scene at Nursery Drive following this afternoon’s accident.
The scene at Nursery Drive following this afternoon’s accident.

 ZR 125 – overturned just outside the River Bus Terminal in the City.

The group included 14-year-old third former, Zakiyah Defreitas, said to have been travelling in a front seat of the ZR. She was reportedly pinned under the vehicle and suffered severe injury to one of her hands.

Up to late this evening, she was listed as a “red” patient at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, following the accident, which also left two other students hospitalised in serious condition.

The majority of the 21 passengers onboard ZR125 when it toppled over, walked away with minor injuries – mainly bruises and cuts to the face, hands and knees, as well as bloodied uniforms which will serve as a lasting reminder of their close brush with death.

One passenger also complained of back injury and was seen being assisted on the scene with a back brace.

The ZR, a Route 7, plied between Bridgetown and Howell’s & Ivy.

Among the large crowd gathered at the scene this afternoon were Minister of Education Ronald Jones, Parliamentary Secretary Harry Husbands and Acting Chief Education Minister Karen Best. They came to offer support to the victims, many of whom appeared shocked and visibly shaken by the incident.

Some of the education officials who responded to the ZR accident.

An angry Minister of Transport Michael Lashley also arrived on the scene.

While details of the accident remained sketchy, Lashley joined with those in the crowd who were against reckless driving.

In fact, he said it was cause for serious concern that “I can go, get a permit, pick up anybody from the road, put them in a van, dress them up, or sometimes don’t even dress them up, put them in slippers and they can go on the roads and transport passengers as recklessly as possible”.

Also commenting on the accident where the third form student reportedly had one of her hands severed, Jones said Barbados did not want to lose any of its young people to such tragedies.

“All we can do is to encourage young people to exercise good sense, good judgement and avoid any vehicle that you know that can prove hazardous to their life and limb.”

Consternation also showed on the faces of Springer school officials, including Principal Pauline Benjamin and other teachers, who reacted swiftly to reports that some of their charges had been injured.

Soon after the incident, police cordoned off the area on Nursery Drive as emergency officials were kept busy transporting victims to the hospital and treating some of the injured on the scene.

Source: (NC)

4 Responses to ZR overturns

  1. Amanda Greaves
    Amanda Greaves June 10, 2015 at 5:37 am

    But a teacher was in the van and still he was driving reckless

  2. Carl Harper June 10, 2015 at 9:04 am

    Everyone except the Minister of Transport and chairman of the Transport Authority could see that this was another accident waiting to happen. Both of them appear more interested in PSV operators wearing uniforms than cracking down on the lawlessness on the island’s roads by these miscreants.

    Public Service Vehicle (PSV) drivers have been responsible for hundreds of injuries and dozens of deaths over the years, but the presidents of the two associations, Morris Lee and Roy Raphael, are more concern about conditions of work, increasing bus fares, and court fines imposed on their members for traffic violations.

    Passengers–70 to 75 percent of them–place their lives in the hands of half drunk, herb high drivers and conductors, daily. Drivers do the “milkshake” and “rock the cradle” to please their youthful fan club. These PSV operators break every traffic law without regard for the safety of those they transport, and the courts seem unable or unwilling to rid the system of the repeat offenders.

    Sergeant Rodney Inniss said the PSVs represent less than one per cent of the amount of vehicles on the roads of Barbados but yet they account for more than 50 per cent (25,000) of traffic offenses islandwide.

    If Inniss does further research he might discover that PSVs have been responsible, more so than any other category of vehicle, for injuring and killing the most people in Barbados over the past 20 years. It is almost a weekly occurrence, now. Yesterday’s accident only served to increase the statistics.

    Not only should the owner’s permit be suspended, it should be revoked. The driver, on the other hand, should be banned from driving and be charged for endangering the lives of his passengers.

  3. David June 10, 2015 at 3:45 pm

    I hope this tragedy is the one that will galvanize the authorities to really get serious with the daily nonsense that occurs on our roads by the lunatics that we refer to as ZR drivers.
    It is sad but these tragedies are occurring fairly regularly. The authorities especially the the police being hot and sweaty always announcing zero tolerance on traffic violations when accidents like this occur.The police is out in force for a day or two.Afterwards,they are not in site and it is back to square one until the other major tragedy occurs.
    I sincerely hope that unfortunate child recovers from her traumatic injuries. I hope she be blessed with a prosperous and fruitful life.

  4. Olutoye Walrond June 10, 2015 at 5:52 pm

    David, why would you think anybody would be galvanized by this tragedy any more than they would be the countless others?

    Remember the Midnight Assassin? Yes, I do. I have vivid memories of the image of a man with half his head sliced off at the hands of these maniacs.

    Now tell me: if that didn’t galvanize anyone why would this “little” tragedy do? Life will continue. The political people will give us the usual long talk, but eventually things will settle back down to normal.



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