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– Staunch advocate reiteratesNot only has justice escaped Denise Dias’ grasp, but after 17 years she has counted more than 3,000 fatal accidents on the country’s roadways.  This daunting state of affairs not only begs for greater enforcement of laws governing the roadways, but also for members of the public to adopt an attitude of care and caution, warned Dias, during an interview with this publication.Her appeal comes even as she prepares to spearhead a vigil this evening, in the vicinity of the Russian Embassy, Kitty, Georgetown, to remember victims of road accidents, among them her eldest daughter Alicea.Denise DiasShe vividly remembers August 23rd, 1996, when her 17-year-old daughter was mowed down by an alleged speeding drunken driver. Alicea was at the time riding her motor scooter along the Rupert Craig Highway.  She was in fact a short distance from the home she shared with her parents and two siblings at Oleander Gardens, East Coast Demerara. Dias recalls that it was just about 16:55 hours on a Friday,Wholesale Authentic Jerseys Outlet, when she got the “traumatic” news from which she has never truly recovered.“I would hate anybody else to be in my position. It is a devastating position when you have lost your child,Wholesale Jerseys,” said Dias in a most sombre tone.According to her, a mere two months before the accident, Alicea was expected to travel to Trinidad to undertake training with a reputable advertising company, as she was hoping to become a graphic artist. A year prior to her death she had completed her CXC examinations and had secured employment with King Advertising Limited, in the city.Dias recounted that Alicea had never really wanted to go away, thus the decision to travel to the nearby Caribbean territory to undergo training for a two-year period.Her daughter’s tragic passing saw Dias’ emotions spiralling out of control. In fact she was overwhelmed with mounting surges of anger when it was discovered that the driver, who was held by police over the weekend of the accident, had in fact skipped country after securing bail, never to return to face the judicial system. Reports are that the driver, who had eight months earlier committed a similar offence, is currently residing in New York,Wholesale Jerseys, Dias said.However, instead of wallowing in the depths of despair, the still grieving woman backed by her family, engaged a proactive stance and started examining existing legislation with a view of highlighting deficiencies.  To her astonishment,NFL Jerseys 2018, she would discover that there was no legislation to deal with speeding,Wholesale NFL Jerseys, driving under the influence, use of safety belt and helmets.Her concerns about the country’s roadways intensified following an equally devastating crash on the Soesdyke/Linden Highway the next year, which claimed the lives of 11 persons, among them eight children.Dias with her supporters decided to establish The Alicea Foundation/Mothers in Black, that was premised on the motto “Let’s work together to make our roads safe.” She has since teamed up with a number of mothers and other individuals with similar stories to advocate for crucial legislation.“We decided to dress in black and hold a silent vigil for one hour every week opposite the parliament buildings… and we did that for nearly four years. It was just demanding that these laws go through parliament.”Together their efforts have been instrumental in the implementation of legislation which has in fact helped to save many lives. However, Dias lamented that although the laws are now in place, they are simply not being enforced.Although the years have passed, time has not in any way removed the pains of that fateful day, which was enough to channel Dias towards the fight of her life – making the roadways a safer place.She revealed that her commitment to the struggle, even today, is driven by thoughts of how productive her daughter could have been had she still been alive.“This is what keeps me going…just knowing that by now I could have been a grandmother; she would have been 33 and would have been married. She would have had a lovely career.”Her vision is that “we can all collectively… parliamentarians, the police force, the Guyana National Road Safety Council, the private and public sectors, between us put road safety as a priority. Instead of every day or every week losing somebody on our roads, we need to do something to prevent it.”“We are too small a population for road crashes to persist. People are killed or injured for life and it is a lot for families, and by extension a population,NFL Jerseys China, to go through,” Dias lamented. Among the measures that she believes must also be put in place is an efficient,Wholesale Authentic Jerseys, computerised database system and comprehensive analyses of road fatality statistics. Such an undertaking she proposes could be engaged by perhaps an insurance company, since such entities also often bear the financial impact.Most importantly, she is calling for a change in the attitude of individuals, since according to her, “we have got this big thing in Guyana where we say ‘it can’t happen to me’ and ‘it’s never going to happen to me’. People are still getting into minibuses and they will ask the driver to go faster and some sit in silence and say nothing. It is not just minibuses but also private cars as well that are speeding, but when it’s the buses there are often multiple injuries or deaths.”“Too many people are guilty of jumping major roads and running traffic lights…everybody seems to be in a hurry, but if they thought about it you really don’t get there any faster.”With support from many organizations, both local and international, as well as many individuals, the members of Dias’ very informal Foundation will this evening come out in their numbers to again condemn drinking and driving and speeding, as they appeal for road laws to be enforced in remembrance of accident victims.
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