By YOHANSEH ASUKILE Monday, February 11 2013
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MANGLED: The wreckage of the two vehicles following yesterday's deadly accident....
CELEBRATIONS in the sister isle over NLCB Buccooneer’s victory in the National Panorama Medium Bands championships were marred yesterday when five persons were killed in a vehicular accident. The accident, was described by police as “something beyond ordinary.”
Police said the accident took place at about 4.25 am yesterday approximately 200 feet west of the Spring Garden/Claude Noel Highway intersection, a stone’s throw away from the NP Gas Station.
ACP Hugh Lovell, head of Tobago Police Division, told Newsday, Alloy Duke, 49, of Buccoo, the sole occupant of a maroon-coloured Mazda 3 car (PCE 1301), was driving east along the Claude Noel Highway and overtook a line of cars only to collide head-on with a Mitsubishi Lancer (PAP 7416) driven by Fernando ‘Bing’ Stewart, which had three other occupants, including one female.
All five persons died at the scene of the crash and firemen later had to use the hydraulic cutting device commonly referred to as the ‘Jaws of Life’ to cut through the mangled wreckage of both vehicles to get to the bodies of the five. The other victims identified by the police are Steven Winchester, 49, of Patience Hill, Arnesta Hamilton of Glamorgan and Christian Stewart.
On the highway, blood from the five mangled, broken bodies mixed on the road with oil and other fluids from the cars, forming puddles near the site of the accident. It was a scene of death, not witnessed by Tobagonians in a long, long time.
District Medical Officer Dr Mentor Melville arrived on the scene with another doctor and ordered the bodies removed to the mortuary of the Scarborough General Hospital.
Newsday visited the home in Mason Hall of the family of Fernando Stewart, whose father Ellery Nedd said Fernando was one of his four children.
Fernando, 36, was the father of a five-year-old girl who began attending primary school last September. Nedd said, when he arrived at the crash scene, one look at the mangled wreckage of the vehicle was enough to confirm that he had lost his son.
The sad man said, in the midst of Carnival revelry he has to bury his son when only recently he (Nedd) had been discussing with Fernando the prospect of the latter settling down and getting married.
Fernando who was well known, was a ward attendant at Scarborough General Hospital. He had finished work on Saturday night after which he went out with his uncle Christian (who also died in the crash).
ACP Lovell noted that it was only on Friday last, that the police had made a special appeal to motorists to exercise care on the roads especially on the long Carnival weekend. This tragedy, he said, reinforces the need for motorists, to not only obey the law as regards speed levels but, to also show respect and due consideration to each other by driving in a safe manner at all times. He later expressed condolences to the relatives of the deceased persons on behalf of the TT Police Service. Investigations are continuing.