JUTC could suspend services on 53 route amid threats

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

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RESIDENTS who travel on Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC) buses on route 53 might be severely impacted, as the Government-run entity warns that services could be suspended.

A statement from JUTC yesterday said that the police are conducting investigations into threats to the bus company, following a collision which occurred in the vicinity of Parks Road, St Andrew, on the Half-Way-Tree to Above Rocks, St Catherine, bus route.

The Jamaica Observer has learnt that residents are threatening to damage JUTC buses along that route after a young man was hit from his motorcycle by one of the buses on Sunday. While being rushed to hospital, the vehicle in which he was travelling crashed. He succumbed to his injuries yesterday at the University Hospital of the West Indies.

The deceased has since been identified as 23-year-old Keimo Powell of Parks Road.

JUTC, in its statement, said that the man died “tragically after the bike he was [driving] veered in the direction of a [JUTC] bus in Above Rocks”. However, residents have refuted this.

The Jamaica Constabulary Force's Corporate Communications Unit told the Observer yesterday that both Powell and the bus were travelling in opposite directions when a disabled vehicle blocked the path of the bus, forcing it to move around it, and that was when the collision occurred.

The incident took place minutes to 10 o'clock on Sunday.

JUTC said: “Preliminary reports indicate that at around 9:50 pm Sunday, a bus was travelling towards Above Rocks when a motor bike travelling in the opposition direction veered into the path of the bus. It's reported that the bike rider was being transported to hospital when the vehicle in which he was being carried met in an accident.

“...Information reaching the JUTC is that members of the community are threatening to damage JUTC's buses in retaliation over the accident. The management of the bus company is expressing condolences to the family of the deceased. It must be noted, however, that any threat of violence, confirmed by the police, will result in the bus company pulling its service to the route to protect State property and life.”

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