VIDEO-Haiti president demands investigation into bus tragedy -Added COMMENTARY By Haitian-Truth

March 14, 2017
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Elected President Jovenel Moise of PHTK political party gives a speech in the commune of Petion Ville, in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince on January 3, 2017. (Photo: AFP)
PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti (CMC) — President Jovenel Moïse has called on the competent authorities to investigate “as soon as possible” a crash that occurred on Sunday resulting in the death of 34 people and injuring 17 others.

Police said that the accident occurred when a bus slammed into a crowd in the city of Gonaives, north of here.

In a statement, Moise said he was dismayed by the “terrible accident” and expressed his “deep sadness.

“The head of state conveys, on behalf of the Government, his sincere condolences to the families and relatives of the victims of this too much drama on our national roads,” the statement noted.

It said that President Moïse, while urging road users to be vigilant, has called on the competent authorities “to investigate as soon as possible [the accident] to shed light on the tragedy.”

Meanwhile, the Civil Protection Coordinator for the Artibonite Department, Faustin Joseph, said that people who were not victims of the crash tried to burn the bus with the passengers inside.

He said that following the intervention of the police, the bus, his passengers and his driver were taken to the police station of Gonaïves.

The bus was travelling from Cap-Haitien to Port-au-Prince at the time of the incident.

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The investigation must go further than this specific incident, and the additional one in which a later bus was attacked, putting some of its passengers in hospital.
There is absolutely no police presence on the highways of Haiti.
Badly maintained vehicles, transporting people and produce, travel at “terminal velocity” without comment. You can be driving along at 50 MPH – maximum safe for that road – only to be passed by a huge truck loaded with people, bags of charcoal, goats and chickens. 4 or 5 guys are perched on the top of the cargo as the vehicle – probably with bad brakes – hits 70 MPH…. perhaps 80.
Major accidents are frequent.
Vehicles in dangerous condition.
The Police – PNH – should mount patrols on the highways and stop this dangerous speeding. It is a simple police duty, but no one does it.
Because of this, Haitians will continue to drive, with the throttle wide open – and people will die.

2 Responses to “ VIDEO-Haiti president demands investigation into bus tragedy -Added COMMENTARY By Haitian-Truth ”

  1. MICHAEL COLLINS on March 14, 2017 at

    (CNN)At least 38 people were killed and 13 others injured in northern Haiti after a bus plowed into a festival crowd before dawn Sunday, in what local authorities said was a hit and run incident.
    The bus, owned by the transportation company Blue Sky Logistics, was carrying people from the northern Haitian city of Cap Haitien to the nation’s capital, Port Au Prince. The bus encountered streets crowded with revelers celebrating Rara, a popular festive season in Haiti that stretches from Mardi Gras until Easter Sunday.

    The bus was carrying people to Port Au Prince when it struck pedestrians.
    Just outside the city of Gonaives, the bus struck two pedestrians, one of whom died instantly. The bus driver continued on for several miles before encountering a Rara band playing music in the middle of the road. The bus plowed through the first group of musicians, then drove through a second and a third band.
    The driver fled the scene on foot and is still at large, police said. Authorities are actively searching for him.

    According to one eyewitness, people were still trapped under the bus when it finally stopped. “You could see bodies missing arms, bodies with stomachs out, and a trail of blood on the ground,” a man named Rigorov, who lives in the area, said. “You could hear people crying and calling for help, but I could not make a difference on who is alive and who is not.”
    Angry survivors tried to set the bus on fire while passengers were still inside, police said, but officers intervened and prevented them from doing so.

    Handy Tibert reported from Haiti and Ryan Prior wrote from Atlanta

  2. MICHAEL COLLINS on March 14, 2017 at

    At least 38 people have been killed and about a dozen injured in northern Haiti late after a bus drove into a parade of pedestrians while fleeing from an accident, civil protection authorities say.

    The bus, which was traveling from Cap Haitien to the capital Port-au-Prince late on Saturday, initially hit two people in a town outside Gonaives in northern Haiti, killing one, said Joseph Faustin, civil protection head in the Artibonite department.

    Faustin said the bus driver then fled and crashed into crowds of people about 5 kilometres away taking part in “rara” parades.

    The parades, which usually take place around Easter, are groupings of musicians playing traditional instruments who are often joined by passers-by.

    In total, 34 people were killed at the scene and another four people died in hospital, said Fred Henry, the area’s deputy representative, who added that the incident had occurred around 4:00am.

    “Usually the drivers involved in such accidents don’t stop because they are afraid they might be killed [in reprisal],” Mr Henry said.

    It was not immediately clear what caused the accident.

    Mr Faustin said angry festival-goers then attacked the bus and tried to burn it before police rescued the passengers aboard.

    The bus driver fled and was being sought.

    The injured were being treated at a hospital in Gonaives, about 100 kilometres north-west of the capital, Port-au-Prince.

    Mr Faustin said the cause of the accident was unclear.

    Haitian roads are dangerous and chaotic, with few rules observed by pedestrians, motorcyclists and drivers.

    President Jovenel Moise called for an investigation into the incident.

    “The head of state sends … sincere condolences to the victims’ families and loved ones,” he said.

    AP/Reuters