WHEN WATER IS EVERYWHERE

BY BRIAN BONITTO
Associate Editor –
Auto & Entertainment
bonittob@jamaicaobserver.com

Friday, May 19, 2017

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MOTORISTS are being advised to exercise care when travelling on the island's road network, especially during this period of inclement weather.The warning is coming from Kenute Hare, director of the Road Safety Unit in the Ministry of Transport and Mining. He said motorists should not engage in any risky behaviour which would jeopardise their safety.

“Avoid all fords... it's better to take the long way home and reach home safely than not to reach home at all. Do not try to test the waters, you will lose; respect it. The water will push you and your vehicle off the road,” he said to Jamaica Observer's Auto magazine yesterday.

“You don't want water on your bonnet or even up to your windows. That's dangerous! The electronics in your vehicle may go dead and you may lose control of it.”

Hare said he has had several reports of vehicles being washed away and damaged.

“Thankfully, we haven't heard of any lives being lost. We have to behave responsibly,” he said.

Several parishes have been under flood waters since the rains began on Monday. The Meteorological Office said the inclement weather, caused by a trough, is expected to remain within the vicinity of Jamaica until Saturday.

Up to press time, the Bog Walk Gorge, which overflowed it banks, remained closed.

“While work crews have made significant progress in removing huge deposits of silt from the road way, the corridor is slippery in many sections as the Gorge continues to be affected by intermittent rain,” said Stephen Shaw, NWA communications and customer service manager.

The work is expected to be completed this afternoon. The NWA however, is advising motorists to use the alternate routes through Sligoville or the North/South highway.

The Cavaliers to Temple Hall main road in rural St Andrew is also impassable as the thoroughfare has broken apart.

“Keep your radios on to listen to the weather bulletins ... you'll be aware of what is happening in your environment,” he said.

“Due to the continuous rains, some road surfaces may be under serious pressure and may have even collapsed. So, please be careful.”

The director urged motorists to cut their speed when the road is wet.

“The speed limits were set for dry roads, not wet, so slow down. You would not want to skid and lose control of your vehicle,” he added.

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