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20.02.2009 Tragedy

94 Killed In Accidents

By Daily Guide
94 Killed In Accidents

A mangled saloon car at the scene Multiple vehicular accidents across the nation have claimed some 94 lives in just a week. In the latest road mishap which occurred in the Dome/Kwabenya area of Accra yesterday, eight persons were said to have lost their lives according to eyewitnesses.

The Police could however not confirm the exact figure at the time of filing this report.

The accident occurred when a tipper truck with registration number GE 3908 X laden with sand rammed into five other vehicles.

Two of the vehicles the tipper truck drove into were commercial ones, an Opel Astra taxi cab with registration number GE 5318Z and a Mercedes Benz bus registered GE 9792 X.

The other vehicles in the multiple accidents are a green Toyota  4x4 pickup (GT 3376Z), a Honda Civic saloon (GR4087X) and another one which could not be easily identified because of its state of wreckage.

An eyewitness, Kwesi Yeboah told DAILY GUIDE that the truck had encountered a brake malfunction at a sloppy point called Musuku Junction road at Kwabenya.

The now uncontrollable truck, as it made the descent, hit first the Opel Astra which was occupied at the time by a lawyer passenger and the cabbie.

Kwabena Ansong told DAILY GUIDE that he saw the truck making a dangerous descent towards his position.

Sensing danger, he tried to give way to the truck as it eventually drove into the first vehicle with an impact which saw a number of others driving into each other.

A certain Asarewaa Twum Agyemang who survived the accident in her Toyota pickup said she was returning to her residence at Regimanuel Estates to pick up something she had left at home when the mishap occurred.

The truck, she continued, was making an over-speeding descent towards her. “I decided to give it way as I sensed danger but it was too late,” she said.

A lady who had dropped off her kids at school and was returning home when the accident occurred was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.

Residents of the area have expressed displeasure over what they describe as the bullying tactics used by drivers of bigger trucks over smaller ones.

They also asked that the authorities re-direct the routes of the killer trucks away from the area because of their increasing population.

The Kwabenya Police could not tell the number of fatalities and injured. The injured are receiving treatment at the Police Hospital as remains of the dead have been deposited at the hospital's morgue.

Perhaps the accident which claimed most lives was the one on the Tamale to Bolgatanga road in which some 35 lives were lost needlessly last Sunday.

On the Damongo to Fufulso road also in the Northern Region three students from Tamale died on the spot when the Mercedes Benz bus on which they were traveling was involved in an accident at about the same time that the bloodbath visited the Tamale-Bolgatanga road.

Following in its heels was the bloodbath recorded at Kintampo in the geographical transition zone of the Brong Ahafo region in which 28 persons breathed their last in an accident.

As if competing for attention, another fatal road mishap took place on the Tema to Akosombo stretch, claiming 16 lives.

The Cape Coast to Accra road which last year recorded a teeth-gnashing accident was not left out when another mishap on the highway snuffed lives out of three persons.

The Accra to Tema Motorway also had a taste of blood when a life was lost there too.

The most serious of the accidents, the Tamale to Bolgatanga one, occurred when a truck laden with onions drove into a Mercedes Benz bus at high speed.

Another vehicle, a bus, tipped over after the driver lost control on being so close to the other vehicles involved in the fatal accident.

The Kintampo to Tamale accident happened at dawn like the aforementioned major one.

The accident involved a DAF passenger bus traveling from Kumasi to Bolgatanga and a Benz 207 passenger bus.

Reports from the scene had it that all the 26 occupants in the Mercedes Benz bus perished in addition to two others in the other vehicle.

Preliminary reports from the Police suggest that the Benz bus veered off its lane and collided with the vehicle approaching from the opposite direction.

The accidents, claiming so many lives almost simultaneously, have tasked the minds of road safety managers, among them police officers manning districts in which they occurred.

A cross section of these officers, while expressing sympathy to the bereaved families, noted painfully what  they consider needless deaths caused by usually careless use of the highways.

The new Minister of Transport, Mike Hammah, also stunned by the scale of fatalities in the countrywide accidents, has ordered an enquiry with a view to coming up with a strategy to obviate future recurrence.

By A.R. Gomda & Nathaniel Y. Yankson

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