Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 28th 2013 Contents A25
Friday, June 28, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
My compliments to Mr Paolo
Kernahan for the confidence
and tenacity with which he
writes his column.
For my part, I have been frustrated
by the non-publication of my letters
(perhaps for good reasons---too acerbic,
bordering on libel); But Mr Kernahan
has given me new hope.
I wonder though whether his writ-
ings are ever even glanced at by those
ignorant two-legged a--es one sees
daily driving the two- four- six- and
even eight-wheel murderous weapons
on today s roads.
Having had my fair share of autop-
sies on victims of road crashes, I try
to drive sensibly by the rules I learned
over 50 years ago.
This was an era where you earned
your licence, and there were actual
motorcycle cops who were more likely
to give you a 15-minute lecture on
your traffic offence than to issue a
True, the car population was infi-
nitely smaller, but so were the roads.
Conversely, there was a significant dif-
ference in the size and function of the
The purpose of a vehicle was prima-
rily to get you to your destination
safely. And one left home to allow
ample time for the journey, and not
leave late so that speed became the
primary ingredient for travel.
My experience will almost certainly
be shared by others driving on our
roads today. For example, here I am
keeping in the fast lane driving at 80
kph because I am soon turning right.
A heavy duty truck I saw in my rear
view mirror overtaking everything in
sight is now on my tail, blowing his
very loud horn repeatedly, signifying
clearly "get the hell out of my way,
slow coach." I brake slightly to warn
him that 1) he is too close, and 2)
though I try to love everybody and
everything, I am not of that gender
My action must have infuriated him
still more since he was blocked on his
left by traffic moving at the same
speed limit. When he did overtake on
my left, he leaned out, gesticulating in
a manner clearly not approving of my
driving, while his rather large mouth
exhibited movements which any lip
reader would have seen as violent
As my vehicle is air-conditioned, I
was able to hear only the loud noise
of an engine accelerating. Nevertheless,
I felt constrained to return his compli-
ment and, losing my normal gracious
behaviour, gave him the well-known
one finger victory sign.
Perhaps one more story is worth
mentioning---that of the NP tanker
careening down the highway (not by
any means an unusual sight). It disap-
pears in the distance, with no signs of
slowing down. My reaction is to recite
a short prayer for those he could send
prematurely to their maker. As for the
driver, I figure that if he chooses to
drive like hell on the road, he is likely
to get there.
Needless to say, there was no police
vehicle in sight, which brings me to
the observation that the responsible
minister of government and/or a police
representative repeatedly promise "an
increased police presence" on the
And while this mayhem goes on
with no preventive measures and no
police presence, there is the ridiculous
exhortation by the Asst COP after
every fatal accident that drivers
"observe the speed limit" and "drive
Curiously, immediately after an
accident there appears, as if by magic,
four or five police vehicles and a wash
of police at the scene.
Then the politicians strive for votes
with appearances at victims homes
and funerals, with studied expressions
of grief, and with the promise always
that "funeral expenses will be taken
care of by the State" (i.e. the taxpay-
er), as if that can compensate for a
dear life lost.
The attempt by whatever authority
to frighten the delinquent driver by
placing garish wrecked vehicles at
points along the highways and other
roads is laughable.
Watch drivers accelerate past the
speed limit having satisfied their
curiosity after viewing a live crash!
And when you, a responsible driver,
slows down to 60 kph because of
large, red warning signs, watch the
jokers accelerate to overtake and pro-
ceed at 80 and over! So Mr COP
and/or our Asst, it may serve us better
to uncover the mystery of the numer-
ous motorcycles and cars supplied over
the years to the service but seen only
on ceremonial occasions or accompa-
nying dignitaries through busy traffic.
And to Mr Kernahan, keep up our
faith and belief that there will be
change by continuing your column
with the welcome humour you offer in
the midst of serious concerns.
TALES OF T&T DRIVERS This letter will be ignored
This is an open letter directed to the Minister of Trans-
port, Chandresh Sharma.
I am all for citizens making an honest dollar. However, I
cannot understand why the ministry and the licensing of-
fice are turning a blind eye to all the "T" registered panel
vans being converted into maxi taxis operating freely on
our nation's roads. Not to mention the additional traffic
they cause and brazen disregard for traffic laws.
Why is this practice being allowed to prosper and
grow? Is it political? Are bribes being paid? Are you cast-
ing a blind eye because the problem is too much of a
headache for you? Please. You tell me!
What are you and your ministry waiting for? Does it
take an accident where a dozen passengers die and/or
get seriously injured before something is done?
As it stands now, passengers travelling in these vehi-
cles have absolutely no recourse should something hap-
pen to them while travelling in these "maxis."
Let us understand. These vehicles are insured to carry
goods and not passengers. Therefore, there can be no
claim for personal injury as a passenger in these vehicles.
But you know what? I know that I'm most probably
wasting my time as only one concerned citizen voicing his
displeasure. This is Trinidad. This letter will go ignored.
In time there will be a serious accident. Pictures of the
accident will be put on the front page. The masses will cry
for justice, burn tyres and block roads. Then and only
then, the necessary action will be taken.
No problem! We accustomed! Prove me wrong nah!
It's Your Write
Dogs' bill protects dog and owner
The South Dog Owners Association fully supports the
Dangerous Dogs' Bill laid in Parliament.
The bill not only seeks to protect innocent people who
walk the streets but the dogs as well.
This bill firmly acknowledges the responsibility of dog
owners and sanctions it so that the animal does not have
to bear the blame when an attack occurs.
It also protects the animal from potential owners who
can be reckless and irresponsible. These animals are our
property and should therefore be properly looked after
with adequate care and attention.
When someone gets bitten it is unfortunately the re-
sult of an individual's misaction. The dog would have had
to be impounded or put to sleep which is certainly not fair.
I am grateful for this legislation and look forward to see
it being implemented.
Retired DMO and family physician
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