Two women lost their lives, while two police officers remained warded in critical condition at hospital last night, after a three-vehicle smash-up along the Antigua Road, Valencia, on Monday.
Dead are Sandra La Barrie, 64, of Phase 1, La Horquetta, and relative Calystra Daniel 43, of La Horquetta Boulevard. Warded in critical condition at the Port-of -Spain General Hospital last night were Cpl Browne and colleague WPC Harding, who both suffered broken bones and internal injuries. Browne was reported to be last attached to the St Joseph Police Station.
According to police reports, around 10.30pm on Monday, La Barrie was driving her red Tiida south along the Antigua Road, when the vehicle began to swerve and ran into a white Corolla, causing that vehicle to run off the road. The Tiida then collided head on with a black Mazda pick-up driven by Cpl Browne, which was heading north.
Occupants of both vehicles remained trapped inside and had to be removed by fire officers with the assistance of the ‘jaws of life.’
La Barrie and Daniel died on the spot, while Browne and Harding were rushed by ambulance to the Arima Health Facility and later transferred to Port-of-Spain General Hospital.
Speaking to the media at the Forensic Science Centre, St James, yesterday, La Barrie’s son, Quentin, said she was a careful driver who had been driving for 38 years. He said the family had been celebrating the wedding of his brother over the weekend.
“It is a case of from joy to sorrow tomorrow, because my brother got married on Sunday. He was supposed to leave for his honeymoon today (yesterday) but he is really broken up right now, ” Quentin La Barrie said, adding that his mother and aunt were returning from dropping off some wedding utensils in Sangre Grande when the accident took place.
He said Daniel, a wedding planner, was a devout Jehovah’s Witness who learned sign language so that she could preach to the deaf.
He added that his mother, who bore five children, had never been involved in an accident and recalled dancing with his mother to a Latin song at his brother’s wedding. He said the family, a close-knit one, are dancers and the greatest memory he has now of his mother is that last dance.
District Medical Officer Dr Gopaul viewed the bodies. Visiting the scene were Supt Neville Sankar, Sgt Dollarway, Cpl Manswell and other officers from Arima Police Station.
Cpl Manswell, of Arima Traffic Branch, is continuing inquiries.