Monday, January 22, 2018

Taxi drivers protest for better roads

Taxi drivers formed a human barricade across the Southern Main Road, La Brea. Photo: Trevor Watson

Frustrated taxi drivers formed a human barricade across the Southern Main Road, La Brea, on Monday protesting bad roads and failure by the authorities to respond effectively.

The taxi drivers and some residents blocked two areas along the main road, near Vance River.

And felled trees along the Vessigny stretch, preventing the free flow of traffic.

The protest which began at 2.15am caused a massive traffic pile up, delaying workers traveling to companies along the southwestern peninsula.

Taxi driver Jason Collins said about 45 taxi drivers gathered at Vance River to highlight their plight. He said for two years taxi drivers have been pleaded for the road to be repaired.

Collins said, “The main road is in a deplorable condition. Two years ago they paved parts of La Brea. But some areas have not been paved for about five years. We burned debris and blocked two parts of the road, so vehicles could not pass. And we cut down trees in Vessigny and it fell across the road. We also formed a human barricade to block the road. This is how serious it is. We need someone to hear us and take some action now.”

Collins said the fiery barricade was removed by police officers at around 11am. Trinidad and Tobago Electricity Commission (T&TEC) employees were also called in to remove the trees.

He said taxi drivers have been invited to a meeting with the La Brea village council to discuss their concerns.

But the taxi drivers are appealing to La Brea MP Nicole Olliviere to respond.

He said, “We have gone to the MP on numerous occasions with this concern, so she is aware of this. We are giving them one day to respond, show us that they intend to do something. Failure to do so will result in more intensified protest action.”