Vandals be warned!

Stricter penalties pending for damage to public property

DPI, Guyana, Tuesday, October 30, 2018

The Ministry of Public Infrastructure is working towards collaborating with the Guyana Police Force (GPF) and the Guyana National Road Safety Council (GNRSC) to institute stricter penalties for vandalism to public property.

According to the Manager of Traffic/Safety/Maintenance at the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, Kester Hinds, the government is forced to expend large sums which could have been otherwise utilised, to service and repair traffic and street lights.

The Traffic/Safety/Maintenance Manager told the Department of Public Information (DPI) that vandals are removing the cables and lights from conductive pipes. Hence, the department cannot fully put in additional traffic signs, guardrails or street lights.

“Despite the measures we are taking on the road, the challenge is that we still find recklessness on the road and with the road accidents many of our traffic lights are destroyed and vandalised. We need to address behavioural changes more aggressively and we are working to increase the fines so that when persons are caught, the fine would be so hefty that it will affect their future behaviour,” Hinds explained.

For 2018 the Traffic/Safety/Maintenance department work programme oversaw the geometric improvement in the vicinity of Giftland Mall on the railway embankment, the installation of signs and guardrails and crash cushions to reduce the damage to vehicles from collisions and the painting of road markings.

Hinds pointed out that the department is currently using thermoplastic materials for the road markings in areas such as New Amsterdam to Number 35 Village, Abary to Mahaica Bridge, Timehri on the East Bank Demerara, West Bank Demerara and the Essequibo Coast. The thermoplastic is durable and lasts longer than the paint used in that past.

“As you drive around our roads you will see that most are painted; it’s an ongoing exercise and we will continue in other areas. So, we are asking persons to look out for acts of vandalism of public properties. If the cables are removed it means no light. And that would make communities unsafe. We will all benefit from the lights so let us protect them,” Hinds emphasised.

Just recently, the Ministry of Public Infrastructure had condemned the case of vandalism on the Schoonard Road leading to La Parfaite Harmonie on West Bank Demerara, where seven out of ten bump traffic signs and metal posts that were installed a few weeks ago went missing.

The sum of $113M has been allocated in the 2018 National Budget for continued infrastructural developmental works.

Ranetta La Fleur.

Images by Leon Leung.

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