6 killed, 3 injured in fiery 3-vehicle collision on WCB public road
Six persons are now dead and at least three others were injured in a horrific three-vehicle collision on the West Coast Berbice public road in the wee hours of Saturday.
Police confirmed that the three vehicles were reportedly speeding at the time of the accident. One of them reportedly burst into flames upon impact. In that vehicle were three friends, one of whom was celebrating his 22nd birthday.
Those dead are Gary Blair, 44, and Joel Jacobs, 29, both of Section D Turkeyen, Georgetown; Keanna Dow, 22, of Number 29 Village, West Coast Berbice; the birthday boy, Jamal Lynch, 19, of Hopetown Village; Jashaun Saul, 19, of Number 22 Bel Air, WCB, and Lindon McFarlane, 23, also of Number 22 Bel Air.
Lynch, Saul and McFarlane were reportedly heading home from a party when the accident occurred.
Injured are Akeem Solomon, 30, of Number 4 Village, WCB; Brian Goodridge, 29, of East Coast Demerara, and Fiona Massiah, 20, of Number 28 Village, WCB.
Goodridge is currently at THE Georgetown Public Hospital, while Solomon and Massiah were admitted to the Mahaicony Cottage Hospital.
Reports are that two of the vehicles were travelling west and the car with the three friends was travelling in the opposite direction.
Following the collision, the car carrying the three friends burst into flames. The burnt bodies of the young men were pulled from the wreckage after the blaze was put out.
When Guyana Times visited the horrific scene on Saturday morning, a resident, Minton McPherson, said he was asleep when he heard the impact. He said he heard screaming shortly after that and by the time he got outside, he saw the car on his bridge in flames.
“We could not get outside because of the heat,” he explained while adding that phone calls were made to both the Police and Fire Service.
Regional Commander, Superintendent Kurleigh Simon told the media that while at this time it is difficult to say exactly what happened, from all indications all three vehicles were speeding.
“As to exactly who collided into who we are uncertain at this time. What is weird about the accident is that two of the vehicles suffered damages to the front; the bonnet and the left side of the third vehicle is ripped away. So, we don’t know who came into contact with whom but definitely no one ran into anyone from behind,” he disclosed.
Persons who visited the scene said six persons were initially taken from the scene with a few appearing to have been dead and others badly injured.
They recalled that the three young men who were in the burnt vehicle were placed on the road for some time before a hearse took away the bodies.
Lynch’s sister, Timika Williams, said that his death has left four siblings in pain. She related that it was friends who would have picked up her brother and taken him out to celebrate his birthday.
However, she received the sad news and rushed to the accident scene early Saturday morning.
“I saw a burnt body and then Jamal was there lying lifeless and his feet were broken, his neck was broken; I don’t know if he tried to jump from the window. And then the other boy, Saul, he was in the corner all badly broken – his legs badly broken.”
At the Fort Wellington Hospital, persons said the bodies were placed on each other and it was difficult to initially identify “who is who”.
The mother of one of the victims, Marva Saul, disclosed that the news reaching her was that her son’s friend was involved in a serious accident.
“From the time I hear Jamal’s name mentioned, I know that to my heart that Joshua had to be in it because he and Jamal always be together and they have another friend but the other friend didn’t go with them last night,” she said.
That friend is Carlon Senena, and he was also with the trio on Friday evening. Senena said they were all at a barbeque at Hopetown Village and left sometime before midnight but his friends did not want to go home. He refused the invitation to go to a party at Leitchfield Village, which is eighteen villages away.
“I told them that I have to work in the morning and I don’t want to be drunk and I can’t work in the morning, so, I left and came home,” the construction worker related.
He pointed out that it was early on Saturday, he received the news of the passing of his three friends.
It was difficult for him to say how he was feeling knowing that he took a decision not to go with them which might be the reason for him being alive today.
“I can’t really say how I feel. Right now, I feel really bad because my friends are gone. We came from a long way…”
Senena, Lynch and Saul attended the Number 8 School together and remained close friends ever since.
Police are still trying to put the pieces together. However, reports are that Jacobs, Dow and Solomon had left Georgetown for a party on the West Coast of Berbice.
According to Jacobs’ father, he did not know that his son was in Berbice.
The senior Jacobs revealed that his son worked with him in the construction field and they had both been living in the capital city for work purposes.
He explained that his son was in the car along with Dow and one other passenger. That passenger, he noted, lost one of his eyes and suffered a laceration to his head.
“I saw him about a week ago, he came here and he brought a pit bull dog and told me when I am going in the morning to work I must drop the dog in Sophia. That is the last I saw him. He came up here last night and I did not see him,” Vincent Jacobs said.
While many family members were mourning on Saturday at Hopetown, Lynch’s friends said they were still going to celebrate his birthday. According to his sister, had he been alive by mid-Saturday, he would have had his friends over.
“The yard would have been full with boys. His friends would have come over and they would have been buying the beers by the case. That is the only thing about them, they would drink the beers. One thing I can say about them is that they don’t smoke,” Tamika Williams related.