Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 11th 2013 Contents A5
Monday, November 11, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
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When a news team from the T&T
Guardian visited the cousins relatives
at their business place on the Western
Main Road, Pt Cumana, yesterday,
friends said the family did not wish to
speak to the media. They confirmed
the circumstances of the accident, and
said they were returning home after
buying burgers in Port-of-Spain.
Almost an hour later, Sookhan was
killed while standing at the side of the
Uriah Butler Highway, minutes after
escaping injury when his car skidded
off the road. Police said around 1.45
am, Sookhan and two of his friends
were returning home from a boat cruise
when he lost control of his white Nissan
B13 after passing the Caroni bridge.
Sookhan s car veered right into a
strip of grass which separates the high-
way s two lanes, but he managed to
bring it to a stop before it could cross
over to the northbound lane.
Sookhan and his two passengers
escaped unscathed and got out of the
vehicle to contact police and their rel-
Sookhan s friend, Anoop Gadjadhar,
told police his friend was standing near
the road while speaking to his mother
on his cellphone, when a black pickup
crashed into him, throwing him several
feet in the air. The driver of the vehicle
then sped off. Sookhan was pro-
nounced dead on the scene by a district
Investigators said his friends were
able to give them a description of the
vehicle and its licence plate and an
arrest is imminent.
In the last incident, Sooknanan and
Stocklin were crushed to death when
their car ran into the back of a pickup
which was parked on the shoulder of
the Churchill-Roosevelt Highway in
Police said around 7 am, Alvin Ren-
nie parked his Toyota Hilux along the
shoulder of the eastbound lane, after
the Maritime Flyover, to urinate. While
he was doing so, the friends gold Nis-
san Cefiro crashed into the back of his
vehicle. Investigators said that upon
impact, Rennie s vehicle moved and
collided with him.
Sooknanan and Stocklin died in their
car. Fire officers removed their bodies
from the mangled wreckage using
hydraulic power tools commonly
referred to as the "jaws of life." Rennie
suffered serious injuries and his two
legs were broken. He remained warded
in a stable condition at the Eric
Williams Medical Sciences Complex
in Mt Hope yesterday.
Their deaths raised the road fatality
toll to 130, according to statistics from
the Highway Patrol and Traffic Branch,
and came less than a month after acting
Police Commissioner Stephen Williams
boasted of a 22 per cent reduction in
road deaths in comparison to last year.
Williams made the announcement late
last month, while speaking at the
launch of a rebranded Highway Patrol
"We set a ten per cent reduction in
fatal accidents for 2013, those were
targets we set earlier in the year. At
this point in time, there is a 22 per
cent recorded decrease, which is way
beyond the set target. We do in fact
hope we continue to realise higher than
the target percentage reduction,"
Williams was quoted as saying.
The statistics show that the toll
crossed the 200 mark from 2006 to
2010, with a marked decrease occurring
in 2011 and last year.
In light of the string of road
fatalities yesterday, road safety
NGO Arrive Alive called on the
Government to implement
stricter qualification requirements
for new drivers and new speed
Contacted yesterday, president
Sharon Inglefield said: "We really
do feel that our drivers are not
coming on to our nation's roads
with enough drivers' education to
drive safely and responsibly."
She said the six accident
victims were all within the high-
risk age group of drivers.
"We need our drivers to
understand that it is a privilege to
drive and with that privilege
comes responsibility ...Research
has shown that drivers with
competence can make the
difference and will make the
difference," Inglefield said.
She suggested that the Motor
Vehicle and Road Traffic Act be
amended to require new drivers
to undergo defensive driving
courses and more robust training
Inglefield also appealed to
drivers to obey the speed limit,
especially in wet road conditions,
but also called for the
implementation and proper
enforcement of speed
"This is particularly needed on a
Friday and Saturday night, from 9
pm to the wee hours of the
morning, when the majority of
these collisions take place,"
In what could only be described as
a twist of fate, 19-year-old Princes
Town resident Clint Marc Stephen
Sookhan was killed by a hit-and-run
driver moments after surviving a car
Sookhan, of Pond Street, Mana-
hambre Road, was standing next to his
B13 car along the Uriah Butler Highway,
near the Caroni overpass, yesterday,
when a dark-coloured pickup ran into
He had just escaped serious injury
after his car crashed into a median
around 1.45 am, when he was knocked
down. The teenager, who was employed
at CMR and Co, Marabella, died on
the spot. The driver of the pickup did
not stop after the accident.
Ironically, Sookhan was talking to
his mother, Seeta, on his cellphone at
the time, telling her not to worry as
he had just survived an accident and
was not injured.
Speaking with the T&T Guardian at
the teenager s home yesterday, his
uncle, Rudy, 49, said the family wants
the driver to come forward.
"How could you bounce down
another human being and just drive
off? We are pleading, we are begging
you to go to the police station and
make a report. You need to come for-
ward and tell us what happened," he
Sookhan s aunt, Sandra, said the
driver of the pickup is the only person
who could answer the family s unan-
"We want to know if the driver see
Clint. This child came out of an acci-
dent and you hit this child. You didn t
slow down, you did not look back and
reverse to see if he was alive and rush
him to the hospital," she cried.
Rudy said Sookhan and three
friends were returning home from a
lime when he lost control of his car
near the Caroni overpass.
The car came to a stop in the median
and they all exited the vehicle, including
passenger Anoop Gajadhar, who made
Rudy said Sookhan called his mother
and told her about the accident, noting
they would have to come and get him.
He assured her that he was okay and
"While he talking to Seeta, the phone
went dead. We tried calling the number
and did not get through," he said.
Shortly after, Rudy said a friend was
driving down the highway and recog-
nised Sookhan s car and called the
family and told them he was dead.
"I could not believe it. I did not
believe that. I went to the scene myself,"
He said Sookhan had learned to drive
since he was eight, as he would reverse
their car in the family s driveway.
"He controlled his car very good.
He was a good driver and everybody
came out the car alive, unhurt," Sandra
Yesterday, relatives, especially
Sookhan s mother, were inconsolable
as they grieved for the teenager.
Seeta moaned loudly and called for
her son to come home as relatives sup-
"He was my special child. They kill
my son, they bounce him down and
kill him. Clarence (Sookhan s father),
I want my son, bring back my son,"
Sookhan s brother, Craig, 20, said
his brother was loved by all and his
mother was planning to buy him a new
car.Sandra said Sookhan always wanted
to be a prisons officer and last week
said he was going to repeat mathe-
matics at CSEC level so he could join
the prisons service.
No funeral arrangements have been
Investigations are continuing.
Relatives and friends try to console a grieving Seeta Sookhan, centre,
mother of accident victim Clint Sookhan, at her Princes Town home
yesterday. Sookhan was killed by the driver of a pickup van on the Uriah
Butler Highway, near the Caroni overpass, on Saturday night after he had
survived an accident in his own car just minutes before.
PHOTO: TONY HOWELL
Driver held for
DUI after man
killed in Point
Antonia Edwards said she
had a "gut" feeling something
bad was going to happen on
Saturday, only to be told
moments later that her baby
brother, Andrew George
Edwards, was dead.
Andrew was killed in a three-
car crash in Point Fortin yes-
The 20-year-old, of Parry-
lands Village, Guapo, was killed
instantly when his Mazda
Familia crashed into a ditch
along the Southern Main Road,
A 47-year-old Point D or, La
Brea man, who crashed into
Andrew s car and caused the
vehicle to careen out of control,
has been detained by police for
Police reports state that
around 12.40 am yesterday,
Andrew was heading south
along the Southern Main Road
when another vehicle heading
in the opposite direction
attempted to negotiate a left
bend near La Brea and crashed
head on into Andrew s car.
Andrew s car smashed into a
silver Kia Optima before it
crashed in the ditch. He died
on the spot. Fire officers had to
use the jaws of life to free
Andrew s body.
Yesterday, Edwards told
reporters her birthday is on
November 19 and on Saturday
she and her brother went with
a friend to Chaguaramas to cel-
ebrate her birthday early. She
said they were on their way
home when Andrew told her to
go home as he was going Point
Fortin to make a "turn."
Edwards said she was in a
separate car with her friend and
went home. She said, however,
that she had a gut feeling that
something was wrong, but when
Andrew called her and told her
he had reached Point Fortin she
Edwards said she went to bed
and before she could fall asleep
her father came into her room
and told her Andrew was in an
"He was a quiet person," she
Edwards said Andrew was the
youngest of three and was a
contract worker at Trinmar. She
said he was working towards
becoming permanent at Trin-
Investigations are continu-
ARRIVE ALIVE RESPONDS
Couple crushed in Barataria crash
Teen killed in hit-and-run...
Family begs driver to surrender
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