Outraged residents are joining United Progressive Party (UPP)
candidate Kelvin “Shugy” Simon in condemning the Ministry of
Works – and the Browne Administration – for poorly securing the
Cades Bay Bridge, the scene of a second accident in mere weeks.
This time around, a tourist was injured and the vehicle he was
driving was damaged.
Videos in circulation show that a portion of the front bumper on the
rental car was ripped off, while the driver appears to be using toilet
tissue to wipe blood from his face.
Some residents are asking why it has taken almost four years to
conduct repairs to the bridge, which was damaged by torrential
rains in November 2019.
Others describe the situation as a fiasco and evidence of complete
neglect – and another reason why the Antigua Labour Party and its
candidate should lose the upcoming by-election in St. Mary’s South.
In a statement published on the weekend, Simon says this serious
vehicular accident – which involved a group of tourists – is the
result of gross negligence at the bridge-construction site.
This accident comes almost four weeks after the Works Ministry
pledged that repair work would continue in earnest; but Simon says
very little has been done since then and the hazards that were
identified have not been addressed.
“This is particularly vexing as we are in the throes of the hurricane
season,” Simon says.
Accordingly, the UPP candidate is calling on the Browne
Administration to address several issues immediately: the lack of
road signage warning of the hazards ahead; the overgrowth and
obstructions blocking the view of the roadway; and the poor
Reconstruction of the Cades Bay Bridge began in late 2019 and is
still far from complete, according to Simon, who has shared several
videos highlighting the danger the incomplete bridge poses.
He says this demonstrates, once again, the Antigua Labour Party
Government’s total disregard for road safety, and the people of St.
Mary’s South are outraged at the lack of attention to these major
safety issues in their community.
After an accident on Sunday, August 13 – in which a vehicle
plummeted into the excavation at the bridge –Minister of Works
Maria Browne claimed that persons had been removing the signage
and barricades placed there by the Ministry to prevent vehicles
from getting too close to the worksite.
The driver who was involved in that mishap reportedly had left
Urlings and was on his way to Old Road.
At that time, the Ministry assured the public that the bridge would
be completed in nine weeks.