Several more critically injured
Could the first day of March 2020 could not pass without this man lying dead beside the damaged vehicle in the ditch on the side of Monrovia-Ganta Highway? On Buchanan Farm between Kakata and Weala along the highway, residents and passersby could not withhold their emotions at the sight of the disaster, which left several others critically injured.
The vehicle is believed to have been Monrovia-bound, coming from Ganta with a few other persons on board.
“I saw the car speeding but out of the paved road, and I told my grandma, mama, accident! Accident!” a local resident narrated.
At the time the Daily Observer reached the scene of the accident, no police officer had come there to establish the cause and identities of victims. Locals said that two other persons on board had been taken to the hospital in Kakata, noting that a woman among them would not survive as her eyes and forehead went deep inward as a result of hitting the metal frame of the vehicle.
Their identities including that of the driver who instantly died could not be given because there was no police officer to identify them and no civilian is allowed to search the pocket or bags to get an ID card or any document bearing names of these people without authorization of the police.
Eyewitness accounts indicated that the driver was believed to be sleepy while, at the same time accelerating, reasoning that where the car went into the ditch to hit the concrete culvert in the gutter was clear as there was no encounter with any vehicle from the opposite direction.
The highway from Red-Light to Ganta in Nimba County was paved during the administration of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf administration and is one of the major achievements of the past administration. This road, like other roads across the country, was in a dilapidated condition and vehicles found it difficult to ply.
Drivers who used it while it was deplorable considered themselves experts in driving on the newly-paved road and, as a result, many drivers speed excessively. Some drivers, mainly the commercial drivers, accelerate with the intent of squeezing at least three roundtrips per day, to maximize their incomes.
Unfortunately, the Liberia National Police (LNP) Highway Patrol is stationed either near Kingsville after 15 Gate or right after Careysburg checking vehicles. Drivers say the vehicle check is not necessarily done for ascertaining legitimate documents but to extort money from commercial drivers.
Since the road was finally dedicated in 2017 there have been numerous of accidents mainly occurring from excessive speeding and improper overtaking.
One of the significantly fatal accidents in recent times involved the presidential convoy en route from Ganta to Monrovia, where Mr. Gabriel Wilson (a.k.a. Executive Horn), who was in the Executive Mansion Press vehicle, died instantly, as did Rev. Victorial Wlue, from the opposing vehicle, belonging to Cllr. M. Wilkins Wright.