Twenty-one persons died in November last, as a result of reckless road users who blatantly continue to disregard traffic laws and endanger the lives of those around them.
Citizens are treated with daily headlines,

Coordinator of the Guyana National Road Safety Council, Ramona Doorgen


where either the passengers are dead or seriously injured. The carnage continues every day. So much so that the coordinator of the Guyana National Road Safety Council has issued a call to have stricter penalties in place for drivers who break the law.
Ramona Doorgen told Kaieteur News that some of the fines currently in place are “too light” for drivers, who think that they are above the law.
“Seven thousand dollars for speeding is unacceptable…that’s chicken feed compared to what these people spend otherwise, a pair of shoes that they wear costs more…the cheapest traffic fine should be twenty thousand…anything else is harsher.”
According to Doorgen, Guyanese have developed “a ‘don’t care attitude’” when it comes to the punishment for these offences.
“They are having the attitude of ‘oh is just a small fine’ and ‘I rather pay the fine and done’…and I don’t think we should continue to encourage persons believing that it’s going to be just a slap on the wrist anymore.”
The coordinator stressed that for 14 years, they have been calling for the penalty of causing death by dangerous driving be harsher to send a message.
“Back then you used to call it motor-manslaughter and the charge was harsh, so we need that again…the punishments right now are unacceptable.”
Further, Doorgen stressed that the night court should be back in session for traffic matters to be dealt with ‘speedily’. The night court was started on October 10, 2016 to tackle the backlog of cases. It concluded in February of 2018.
She pointed out that the council will be proposing higher fines for all traffic offences, more notably causing death by dangerous driving, speeding and driving under the influence.
Also, the council is also looking at introducing the demerit point system for drivers. Demerit points are added to your driver’s licence, if you are convicted of breaking certain traffic laws. Points can be added or subtracted and if the points exceed the required limit, the licence can be suspended or revoked.
Meanwhile, the last recorded number of road deaths for 2019, according to Traffic Department was 94 deaths in October. That number has grown to 115. The latest victim added to the list was 18-year-old Deshon Morris who on Tuesday evening crashed into a truck on the East Bank Public Road at Houston.

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