Lawyer: Roads like death traps

Main Stories, National

The National, Monday 6th May 2013


PAPUA New Guinea’s roads have become like death traps for motorists and pedestrians because a high number of road users were unlicensed and inexperienced drivers, a lawyer from the public prosecutor’s office said.

Rabaul officer in charge of public prosecutions Lukara Rangan said motorists who drove defective motor vehicles along the roads caused accidents. 

He was making a submission on sentencing in a dangerous driving causing the death of a woman case in the National Court at Bomana.

A Central man, Edward Lohia, 46, of Tubuserea village, was found guilty of dangerous driving causing the death of a woman by Justice Panuel Mogish last month.

“The death toll of pedestrians will continue to increase as a result,” Rangan said.

He said many of the roads in the country would continue to deteriorate and that would make them potential death traps.   

He also said in his submissions that drivers owed a duty of care to their passengers. 

“It is their responsibility to ensure their vehicles are mechanically sound, law compliant and they are sober, fit and appropriately licensed to drive the particular motor vehicle,” he said.

Mogish had initially sentenced Lohia to 18 months in prison.

But he  suspended it after taking into account that Lohia did not have any prior convictions.

Lohiua had admitted the offence, expressed remorse and cooperated with police during their investigation.

The judge, instead placed him on a good behaviour bond for 18 months.