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Story Highlights

  • The Road Safety Unit in the Ministry of Transport, Works, and Housing, is, again, urging motorists and their passengers to wear seatbelts and helmets, in order to minimize the degree of injuries from collisions.
  • This appeal was made by Director of the Unit, Kenute Hare, while addressing a recent Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Think Tank, at the agency’s head office, in Kingston.
  • Referring to the deaths of 18 motor vehicle passengers since the start of the year, Mr. Hare said most of them were located on the back seats and were not wearing seatbelts when the incidents occurred.

The Road Safety Unit in the Ministry of Transport, Works, and Housing, is, again, urging motorists and their passengers to wear seatbelts and helmets, in order to minimize the degree of injuries from collisions.

This appeal was made by Director of the Unit, Kenute Hare, while addressing a recent Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Think Tank, at the agency’s head office, in Kingston.

Referring to the deaths of 18 motor vehicle passengers since the start of the year, Mr. Hare said most of them were located on the back seats and were not wearing seatbelts when the incidents occurred.

“The drivers of these motor vehicles were belted; they survived the crashes. So we are appealing to backseat passengers to wear their seatbelts every time because the seatbelt restrains you; it prevents you from being thrown out of the vehicle,” he said.

In the case of motorcyclists, Mr. Hare said he majority of 18 fatalities recorded in this group, since January, resulted from head injuries due to the victims not wearing helmets.

“They could have given themselves a fighting chance to survive had they worn their helmets … the ones with internal padding and chin straps. The helmet reduces the degree of injury by up to 75 per cent,” he explained.

The Director bemoaned what he said was the particularly high occurrence of motorcycle accidents in St. James, Hanover, Westmoreland, and St. Elizabeth.

“Those parishes…account for more than 50 per cent of motorcycle fatalities. We have 13 fatalities in Westmoreland so far, of which eight were motorcyclists,” he said. He pointed out that none of the victims were wearing helmets, with all being males under 40 years old.

“For every motorcycle there must be two helmets, one for the rider and one for the passenger, at all times,” Mr. Hare reminded.

Sixty-eight road fatalities have occurred since the start of 2015, 17 of which involved pedestrians.