Over 220 crashes during safety campaign

| 04/01/2016 | 42 Comments

Cayman News Service(CNS): There were 226 road accidents in Cayman during the RCIPS’ month-long Holiday Safety Initiative, Operation Magpie, which ended this weekend. The police said the number of collisions caused concern, but after 15 road deaths during 2015, the fact that no one else lost their lives or suffered serious injury on the roads during the campaign was seen as a positive conclusion to an otherwise deadly year.

“This is a relief and a good result,” Chief Inspector Claudia Brady, Area Commander for George Town, said, adding that the police campaign as well as the National Drug Council’s Purple Ribbon Bus service and the media’s assistance with spreading the safety messages had paid off. “Despite that good news, the high number of overall DUI arrests shows that some people still aren’t getting the message.”

Since the beginning of the Holiday Safety Initiative, which began on 30 November, there was a total of 226 crashes in the 35-day campaign — an average of almost 6.5 crashes every day. There were 32 arrests for drinking and driving and 52 for speeding. Forty-eight people were ticketed for using a phone while driving and another 253 tickets were issued for various traffic offences.

However, police said that during the last week of Operation Magpie crashes, DUIs and other traffic infractions fell. There were only 5 DUI arrests during the last week of the campaign, including New Year’s weekend, and only 36 collisions, which was less than the earlier weeks of the initiative.

“Drivers were being more sensible last week, in part because they knew we would be out in force, thanks to the media and constant safety messages,” said Inspector Adrian Barnett, Head of the Traffic Management Unit. “But we also had one week in December where there were as many as 69 accidents, which is very high. The Traffic Management Unit is being reinforced because we know that the need for enforcement and road investigations is only going to increase.”

The RCIPS Holiday Safety Initiative also focused on personal, home and business safety, as well as water-related safety, with regular appearances of officers in the media discussing safety concerns and tips.

Improving road safety, however, was the main priority of the safety campaign, which began with the release of a road safety documentary, “Road Impact: Cayman Islands”, a joint production of the RCIPS and Cayman 27 that explores the impact of road fatalities on families and the wider community. The RCIPS will continue its road safety message even though the holiday campaign is over, and plans to show the documentary in schools and elsewhere.

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Comments (42)

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  1. Cheese Face says:

    Apparently the Linford Pierson is now a 3 lane road, looked so this morning when the silver F150 and the crappy blue Honda just went straight up the middle into oncoming traffic.

  2. Anonymous says:

    What is needed is more appropriate sentencing for those that kill while over the alcohol limit. Take the recent Nowak case, 15 months sentence for killing an innocent man in horrible circumstances. That was a truly offensive sentence. Killing someone while drunk should have a meaningful minimum sentence as is the case for gun possession.

  3. PT says:

    My 2016 wish list for the drivers of cayman, in no particular order:

    1 – dont speed. Our roads are not designed for it. The higher the speed the exponentially worse the damage. Young men particularly.. take note. Your testosterone is not as good as your driving ability, your cars are fast and your skills are undeveloped (i speak from experience) so please, SLOW DOWN.

    2 – use your rear view mirror and please
    stop the absurd practice of stopping for every driver trying to enter your lane. If there are only 1 or 2 cars behind you, the car will get the chance to enter in a few seconds after we all pass.

    3 – dont drink and drive. Ever. The laws and enforcement here are a joke. Back home i would not drive after 2 beers. I would be stopped and lose my license and get a criminal conviction
    Here, 12 beers is ok. Your government is failing you in this regard as they are not protecting others from your actions, so please take individual responsibility.

    Peace out and lets have a safe 2016.

    And govt/rcips: documentaries are a start but do something. Set targets. Broadcast them. Enforce them. What is your target for 2016 and what are you doing about it? Finally… ENACT A TRAFFIC DEPARTMENT. Forget any bs about expats or vehicle quality espoused in other posts, at the end of the day drivers here can do whatever they want, when they want because there are no cops around. FAIL.

    • Anonymous says:

      Err, don’t you mean that ‘your driving ability isn’t as good as your testosterone’, after all it’s their driving ability that’s under scrutiny, not their male hormones?

  4. Anonymous says:

    I recently had friends come and visit. they stayed out east. i picked them up the first day to drive them in to pick up a rental car. by the time we had arrived in town they had decided they would not be able to drive here due to the crazy drivers and speedsters while also concentrating on the left side of the road. not a good intro for a caribbean vaction.

    • Anonymous says:

      You should not have such stupid friends then. Driving on the left takes 10 minutes to get used to, unless you are very dumb. The worst thing is the stupid ones hire left hand drive cars which make it more difficult to adjust. US drivers should be required to hire right hand drive cars for the safety of others.

  5. Cayman Road User says:

    Some people are driving here just like how they cant or drive in there third world countries. Had a accident recently myself in one of the roundabouts and had a very nasty experience when Cop who turns up instantly determined it was my fault in favor of his fellow countryman. Then only later when I notified my insurance to find out other party was at fault and I accepted liability only because the policeman insisted. Apparently this has happen to several other road accident victims.

    • cayman says:

      A policeman is not a judge and can’t possibly solely determine whose fault it was. Take photos next time and try to get witnesses.

      • Insurance Trap says:

        That should read “Should not” be judge don’t say he cannot because it happens quite often where persons are told that they will be prosecute in order to motivate or coerce a quick resolution and settlement to an accident.

    • Anonymous says:

      That is the sort of problems that happen in life when you were born stupid.

      • Accident Victim says:

        Minor accidents don’t go to court what then you idiot! who else will determine which driver is a fault but the police. The fact this has been happening quite frequently to some parties involved in accidents.

        • Anonymous says:

          Utter crap. The police do not determine this stuff and if you think that you are stupid beyond belief. You say what happened to your insurer, so does the other person. Then the insurers assess the reports and the evidence. Usually, if not almost always, you have the right to have the matter adjudicated in the court, although you are right that few get that far.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Worth noting that your headline could also have read, “Over 220 crashes REPORTED during safety campaign.” The reality is that a lot more (particularly single vehicle, no injury ones) probably went unreported. The standards of not just driving but also vehicle safety on these islands is third-world.

    Even a lot of the relatively new vehicles here wouldn’t meet UK or US safety inspection standards because people buy them on them on some sort of finance deal then can’t afford the maintenance costs. It’s no good owning a car with all the modern safety features if you then run it with worn out brakes, shot shocks or on tires that are either bald (I’ve seen them used through the rubber and down to the casing!) or come out of some ‘part-worn’ pile of scrap.

  7. Anonymous says:

    As the RCIPS Jamaica-grade traffic effort pats themselves on the back and goes back into its annual hibernation period, we’d like to point out that for every actual collision there are 100’s or more careless maneuvers, road rages, and near misses. Joggers, pedestrians, and cyclists on the roadway in the dark with dark clothing. The habit of signaling is rare and the fashion of holding a phone to an ear is still common – even though every smartphone has bluetooth or a speaker function! Routine commutes are filled with these sightings and experiences. It is really just pure luck more people aren’t seriously injured. The RCIPS cannot take credit for work they aren’t doing.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Always passing the buck, ppl need to be more responsible with their driving, if there was a cop on every corner persons would still manage to get in accidents between them. I guess the rcip could just drop everything else and just stick to traffic, and then they would get bashed because homes get broken into etc. We all have a responsibility!

    • Anonymous says:

      Adrian Barnett has the very comfortable job of being Head of the RCIPS Traffic Management Unit – that seemingly convenes for sporadic & temporary road closures (accidents and parades) and a holiday blitz for <1 month a year. If these crime-fighters (that don't follow or understand all of the Traffic Law) are being retasked to greater responsibilities during regular season shifts, then perhaps that accounts for the warehouses of unsolved mysteries, the botched evidence delivered at trials, and all the bad guys that go free. It would go a long way to explaining what happens (or doesn't happen), but I suspect there are other specialists in the force of 400 that foul that stuff up on their own.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Said it once and will say it again. Until the RCIP reinstate the full time traffic department and crack down on tinted license plates, tinted windows, parking wherever you want, especially in blue spots, road racers, etc our roads will continue to resemble Mad Max Beyond the Thunder dome!

    Hey Bainsey, this is what is referred to in real world management as low hanging fruit. Sitting in plain site and easy to pick. Now get on with it.

    • Anonymous says:

      “Bainesy” will listen to you as much as he has listened to anyone else.

    • Anonymous says:

      Spot on. Every day I observe dreadful driving. It is a mystery to me (and perhaps you, the reader) why the police cannot see what I am seeing and take the necessary action.

      • Anonymous says:

        Because most of them are crap drivers themselves, that’s what happens when you have an RCIPS third world recruitment campaign, dangerously low standards of driver training and not a clue about traffic law.
        All police officers should be given the highest standard of driver tuition commensurate with their duty responsibilities and none of them should be allowed anywhere near a police vehicle unless they can pass a UK police service driving course.
        But that would require local commanders and other more senior officers to actually understand the problem and manage it in a professional manner. But hey, it’s Cayman and that’s never going to happen.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Yep, I could have gotten into two accidents yesterday between Cricket Square and CNB roundabout. White van was heading down the wrong lane coming straight at me, seconds later, driver or a crap car decided to “merge” into my lane whether I was there or not!

    I am fearing for my life and the life of my loved ones on these roads every single day!

  11. Duplicity Island says:

    No surprise here it is simply too many work permits drivers and too many terrible drivers being issued drivers licenses to drive on these roads! If we don’t cut back on this work permit drama we have going on here. We are going to have more serious problems than car crashes in Cayman. 220 is a bit outrageous though?

    • philip says:

      Really?, so its the work permit guys that are killing themselves by Speeding , driving drunk Etc, i think you will find that the statictics will proof your racist little rant wrong!.

      • Johnny Doubletap says:

        Time for you to face reality phil!! Wake Up Bro

      • Pullpa says:

        Dey is clogging up our roads nah bwoy hush ya mouth nah!

      • Anonymous says:

        Death by car accidents are definitely local. Young men with cars are a dangerous combo for sure. This is proven world wide. But with everyday bad driving JAMAICANS take the cake. Ever been to Jamaica?? Well,,,, patience is not practiced and the abundance of impatience is evident daily in cayman. But wait, they’re caymanian now but with a reggea accent. I’m so confused.

        • Anonymous says:

          wow and now we have turned this into a racist issue!!!!

          • Anonymous says:

            Racist;
            a person who believes that a particular race is superior to another.

            Google is a beautiful thing, I suggest you use it before you comment using fancy words.

            • Anonymous says:

              Distinguishing between people on the basis of their national origin is within the legal definition of race discrimination. I appreciate that you may find solace in categorising your narrow minded bigotry as something else.

        • Anonymous says:

          There was me thinking the government had suspended all traffic laws for December

  12. Anonymous says:

    With some of the worlds most moronic and unskilled drivers on the roads, joined by those whose international driving qualifications mean absolutely diddly squat, what do you expect?
    It’s time for a total review of all driving qualifications to ensure that all drivers qualify for the basic Cayman/UK driver standards and not US straight line driving, Jamaican and Phillipino chaos driving or any other 3rd world derivatives.
    Vehicle standardisation should be made mandatory, with all vehicles conforming to the local lighting and signalling code, and it needs rigorous enforcement both on the roads and at testing.
    Basically, Cayman needs to take driving more seriously at all levels, especially and tuition, testing and enforcement.

  13. Anonymous says:

    “…which ended this weekend…”

    “Drivers were being more sensible last week, in part because they knew we would be out in force…”

  14. Anonymous says:

    Alright… there you go, there is your results, now do us all a favor and continue this “operation magpie” for the rest of the year please.

    Clearly you can see we need this.

    • Anon says:

      if 15 people had died as a result of any other activity we would all be up in arms and demanding protection. why do the police think that something as deadly as a lack of road safety is not deserving of prioritisation? i would suggest that many of those 15 people would be with us today if their was consistent policing of our road traffic laws – its time to get your priorities straight RCIPS.

      • Anonymous says:

        The real blame for the vast majority of fatalities is criminal drunk or high young Caymanian men driving old cars at high speed. Vastly increasing the penalties for DUI and killing while drunk are necessary.

        • Anonymous says:

          Actually, you’re wrong; to a point. It’s not “Caymanians in junk cars” it’s every and anyone who can come here, scrape two dollars together to buy some import crap. People who never owned a car in their life gets here and jumps behind the wheel. AND as well as Those local fools that seem hell bent on going out in a blaze of glory.

          What we need to do is stop giving out drivers license so easily. Institute proper drivers education, and stop issuing licenses to those who just arrive to the island.

          • Anonymous says:

            No, that won’t make any difference. The worst offenders, young men, can pass the requisite tests quite easily and no amount of drivers’ education will stop them. Look at who was at the wheel in the fatal accidents of 2015, the overwhelming majority were young Caymanian men.

        • Anonymous says:

          Driving old cars and causing these accidents??? Don’t think so, go and check what type of cars the majority of these people are driving and it will be little Japanese Cars, Honda Civics to name one

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