A mother’s plea with her young son not to go swimming in a dug out sand pit yesterday failed to save the youngster who met his demise while returning home from the very same sand pit.
Sometime after 11:00 hours yesterday, workers in the Latchman Sand pit, Soesdyke, found 10-year-old Derrick Paul Deonarine lying in a trail leading towards the pit.
However, no one could really say what transpired. Some speculated that the lad was killed at one spot and moved to another.
One man who raced to the scene after being told that there was an accident at the sand pit said that he was told that the lad tried jumping onto a passing truck but was run over.
The man who asked not to be identified told this newspaper that when he arrived on the scene, the lad appeared to be dead and the position he was in suggested that he was merely placed at the spot where he was found.
The lad was found lying on his back with one arm across his abdomen and the other straight to his side.
Derrick’s mother, Seeta Sumair, said that she was at home when another relative came to her and told her that her son “get cover in a sand pit.”
“When she come and tell me that I seh girl don’t come to me with nonsense because I ain’t got time.”
However she was subsequently convinced that something was amiss after she saw another relative sobbing uncontrollably.
“I just start running towards de sand pit and when I reach a see a big crowd around me son and de police.”
According to Sumair, all she was told was that the child was run over by a sand truck as it was making its way out of the sand pit.
The woman related that her son’s right side face was crushed and there was an abrasion on the left side.
She said that the three other lads who were with her son, have since informed the police that they had already crossed the road leading to the sand pit and that Derrick was in the process of crossing when the truck ran over him. It was moving too fast, they said.
The grieving woman said that the position in which her son was found leaves a lot of unanswered questions. The woman, who said she is familiar with the area where she was told the incident took place, said that the area is covered in black sand but that her son’s body was covered with white sand.
This, she said, is worrying to her, since she, like many others who gathered at the scene, she believes that the lad was moved from one location to another as the person who struck him panicked.
Persons who gathered at the scene expressed the view that it was strange that the incident only was reported to the lad’s family and to the police some three hours after.
“Is since 11 this thing happen.
If whoever do it had a heart they coulda pick de boy up and carry he to de hospital instead of just moving he and trying to make up a story,” one resident said.
The woman further told this newspaper that she has been pleading with her son for the longest while not to go to that particular area to swim.
“I does work so I don’t really be home but whenever I hear he go to the sand pit I does deal with he…But he still does go back and swim.”
In the meantime, as the police continue their investigation, a truck driver has been detained to assist with investigation.
The police are now relying on statements given to them by the three lads who were with Derrick at the time of the incident.
Section of Linden-Lethem road still closed
Authorities say that a section of the Linden-Lethem road is to be closed today and tomorrow to facilitate urgent repairs to a log bridge.
The bridge in question is said to be made of logs and located 30 miles from the Kurupukari Crossing, between Siparuni Junction and Kurupukari Crossing, a public notice by the Ministry of Public Works and Communication in the Kaieteur News said yesterday.
According to the notice, the closing will only be for the two days.
Earlier this week, IntraServ, a bus company that operates six trips weekly from Lethem using its 47-seaters, announced a suspension of its service with an official saying that the condition of the roadway has worsened to the point where the company is now forced to cease its services “until further notice”.
Minibus operators, who traverse the road said, earlier this week, that while they are able to move, the going is slow, with many parts of the road being in a “terrible state”.
While lighter vehicles could have crossed the bridge, some of the trucks and bigger buses were forced to use pieces of planks and other materials to get across.
However, over past week, the bridge became unsafe for the bigger vehicles. IntraServ said that it was forced to make an “unfortunate” decision to suspend the service.
Normally, in dry conditions, the company makes six return trips weekly from Lethem.
A journey that would take up to 12 hours would now take as many as 16 to18 hours.
“There are big holes and flash flooding and the bridge has really deteriorated,” the IntraServ official said.
Almost two weeks ago, the roadway had to be closed after rains washed away sections of it.
Minister of Public Works, Robeson Benn, and other officials, had blamed the torrential rains in the interior for the damaged sections of the Mabura Road.
Rickford Lowe, Head of the Works Services, had disclosed that following heavy rains earlier this month, a culvert at 42 miles on the Linden-Lethem road collapsed, rendering that section of the road impassable.
He said, too, that some erosion at 40 Miles created some difficulty for motorists due to erosion of the roadway. Lowe said that when the Ministry learnt of the damaged sections to the road, immediate steps were taken to have repairs done.
“In this regard the section at 40 Miles has been fully rehabilitated and the works commenced at 42 miles where pipe culverts of increased capacity will be used.”
Benn said that there were ongoing road works at different sections prior to the rains but had to be halted because the rains would hinder any proper road works.
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