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Couple burns to death

By Cecily Asson Tuesday, July 8 2014

click on pic to zoom in
Rajesh Dwarika who died in road accidents between Wednesday and yesterday....
Rajesh Dwarika who died in road accidents between Wednesday and yesterday....

A young couple met a fiery death early yesterday morning when the car in which they were travelling burst into flames after veering off the north bound lane of the Solomon Hochoy Highway and slamming into a concrete post.

Jermaine Ackie, 22, of Roystonia in Couva and his girlfriend Lee Ann Ramkissoon, 22, of Champs Fleurs were burnt beyond recognition. Police officers on the scene were able to trace their identities through two cell phones found in the burnt wreckage of the rental vehicle.

Ackie and Ramkissoon were two of six persons who perished in three separate vehicular accidents over the weekend. Two people also died in an accident on Uriah Butler Highway, Chaguanas on Sunday.

A seventh victim identified as Arjoon Matadeen, 60, succumbed to his injuries on Saturday, four days after he was involved in a vehicular accident in Ste Madeleine. Up to yesterday, Matadeen’s wife Sumintra Matadeen, 55, remained warded at the Intensive Care Unit of the San Fernando General Hospital in a critical condition. She suffered severe internal injuries. Their grand daughter Carline Matadeen, 19, sustained injuries to her feet and has since been discharged.

In the first vehicular accident, police reported on Sunday morning, Rajesh Dwarika of Fourth Street, Arouca and a yet to be identified woman were killed when the B 15 Nissan Sunny car driven by Dwarika crashed into a utility pole along the Uriah Butler Highway in the vicinity of Radio Trinidad Transmission station. Friends Rohan Browne, 19, of Morvant, Precious McCarthy, 17, of San Juan and Jade Chase, 17, of East Dry River, Port-of-Spain who were also in the vehicle sustained severe injuries and remain warded in critical condition at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt Hope. It was reported that fire officers had to use the jaws of life to remove the three teenagers from the mangled vehicle.

And yesterday at about 12.30 am, Ackie was driving a white Toyota Corolla rental car, proceeding north along the Solomon Hochoy Highway when upon reaching the vicinity of the Claxton Bay Flyover, the vehicle veered off the road. According to reports, the vehicle slammed into a concrete post causing it to overturn several times before landing on its hood and bursting into flames. Ackie and Ramkissoon remained trapped inside the burning vehicle. Officers from the Couva Police Station and the Savonetta Fire Station responded to a report of a burning vehicle on the highway. When the flames were extinguished, fire fighters found the charred remains of the couple. Officers used the cell phones and contacted family members.

Yesterday Jevon Ackie, 27, told Newsday his brother was on his way to Champs Fleurs where he had planned to spend the night at the home of his girlfriend.

“He had dropped off a cousin in South and was heading back up the highway to spend the night with her,” Jevon said.

“You know he was saving his money and had planned to buy his own car at the end of this month? He and his girlfriend had so many plans. Two of them really burn bad. This real tragic.”

He said the family including their mother Karen Jones were contacted by police and told of the tragedy.

An autopsy at the Forensic Science Centre, St James which was scheduled for yesterday is expected to be done today instead.

Ramkissoon’s mother Sharon fell ill when she learned of her death and was taken to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt Hope yesterday.

“Our mother is in the hospital. She got chest pain when she learned about Lee Ann. Her blood pressure spiked up, and she has a heart condition,” said a relative. Relatives were at the Forensic Science Centre to identify Ramkissoon’s body which they will do instead today before the autopsy. Ramkissoon, who was a student pursuing various courses, was described by a relative as a “quiet child” who always listened.

Hours before she died, Ramkissoon told her sister that she was “going out to come back,” however no one in her family knew where she and Ackie were going. Cpl Cumberbatch of the Couva Police Station is continuing enquiries.

In the case of Matadeen a retired carpenter and grandfather of four of Tarouba Road, Marabella, police reported that around 7.30 p.m last week Wednesday, Arjoon was driving his Mazda 323 along Naparima-Mayaro Road, Ste Madeleine when a Nissan B-15 Sentra, driven by Jameel Braithwaithe, 22, of Palmyra Village, San Fernando, collided head-on with their vehicle. Matadeen, his wife Sumintra who was a front seat passenger and grand daughter Carline and Braithwaithe were all rushed to the SFGH where they were treated and warded. Carline and Braithwaithe were subsequently discharged the following day.

Arjoon would have celebrated his 61st birthday on August 1.

Yesterday Carline who survived the crash told Newsday she has not slept since the accident that claimed the life of her grandfather.

Carline said: “ I heard Granma who was sitting in front start to scream telling him to look out, look out. A car crashed head on into us. When everything happened we went forward. My foot was trapped under Granpa seat, Granpa was pinned to the steering wheel and Granma head hit the windscreen.” Carline suffered cuts and bruises to her feet and a fractured toe.

The part time information technology student said she was grateful to the passersby who rushed to their assistance and tried to make them comfortable before the medical help arrived.

Up to late yesterday relatives said they had not told Sumintra of her husband’s death.

Family members are now praying for Sumintra’s recovery as she suffered two punctured lungs, broken ribs and a right foot broken in eight places.

PC Flavinney of the Ste Madeleine Police Station is investigating. These recent deaths have taken the number of road fatalities to 82.







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