The National, Thursday 09th Febuary 2012
By ZACHERY PER
A SPEEDING semi-trailer truck went off the road at the Korekoreto section of the Highlands Highway near the Asaro government station, Eastern Highlands, yesterday morning.
The driver of the truck was allegedly under the influence of alcohol and was with a female companion.
It is believed the driver, who was yet to be identified, lost control of the truck which was not carrying any cargo and travelling to Lae.
It fell onto the right side of the road at around 11.30am yesterday, locals at Korekoreto said.
Eyewitnesses Benny Gahare and Steven Daro said they were working in their gardens when they heard a loud bang.
“We knew that there was an accident so when we ran to the road and we saw the driver who appeared drunk and came out of the truck with a female companion. They ran away towards Asaro station,” Gahare said.
He said local boys would be looking after the truck and wait for the owner to retrieve it.
However, locals were seen draining fuel out of the truck and selling it to vehicles and passengers passing the scene.
Mapai Transport official rushed to the scene soon after hearing of the accident and attempted to retrieve the truck.
Eastern Highlands provincial police commander Supt Augustine Wampe recently said police would raid homes near where trucks had been looted and parts stripped.
Police raided residents in Faniufa last month after they looted a truck of its goods which went off the road.
Wampe urged trucking firms not to allow their trucks to travel in the early hours of the morning, especially when police were not on the road.
He suggested that every truck should have two drivers.
“It is dangerous for drivers who do not have sufficient rest to drive in the very early hours of the morning and to have trucks that are not serviced properly on the road,” Wampe said.