29/06/2010

Second Stolen Saburu Death Revealed

The Stormont Roads Minister has expressed his shock and concern at the toll of road casualties over the past weekend.

Edwin Poots was commenting on several deadly incidents, including one in which two men have since died from their injuries and one where a child was knocked down and killed.

The second man to die - whose age has not yet been revealed - followed that of a 23-year-old also fatally injured on Monday night in the incident, which was one of the worst scenes of carnage witnessed in recent years, according to paramedics.

That victim has been named locally as Conor Rules.

A total of six men in their 20s were travelling in the silver Subaru Impreza (similar to the one pictured). Four of them were thrown from the car after it careered out of control on the Leathemstown Road.

The high-powered vehicle had been stolen from outside a house at Maralin Avenue in Lisburn, prior to the crash at about 6.20am on Monday.

All six men were taken to the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast. Two were initially said to be critically ill, while the other is in a serious but stable condition - and now two of the worst injured have since died.

Two of the men who were not seriously injured were arrested in connection with taking and driving the car. One of them has since been released.

Meanwhile, three other people died in a series of crashes across Northern Ireland between Saturday and Monday morning.

Mr Poots said: "Our deepest sympathy goes out to the families and friends of those who have so tragically lost their lives on our roads over the past three days, and our thoughts and prayers are with those who have been injured."

In one crash a 23-month-old girl died after she was struck by a vehicle near the village of Clough on Saturday.

She was named today as Kaci Caskey and in a statement, her parents, Natalie and John said their daughter died whilst staying with her uncle and aunt, Noel and Caroline Morley.

Mr Poots said: "This is all the more tragic because it is the first child fatality on Northern Ireland's roads in 2010.

"Any death on our roads is distressing, but the death of a child, especially one so young, is even more difficult to comprehend."

A second crash on Saturday resulted in the death of a man in Gilford while a third man was killed yesterday morning in Derrylin, Co. Fermanagh.

Mr Poots continued: "As we begin the summer holiday period, I urge all road users to take greater care. As schools close for the summer, be extra vigilant for more children on the roads and people out walking taking advantage of the current good weather and brighter evenings.

"Likewise, I appeal to motorcyclists to take extra care at this time and I also call on all drivers to look out for the increased number of motorcyclists who will be enjoying the biking season," noting that the events of the weekend show how quickly disaster can strike, and how important it is that our efforts to end the carnage should continue.

So far this year 25 people have died on Northern Ireland's roads compared with 59 for the same period last year.

Sinn Féin MLA for West Belfast has extended her thoughts to the families of the man killed and those critically injured in the car crash on the Leathemstown Road.

However she has stressed that more work needs to be carried out to tackle car crime: "There is a problem of car crime within the area of west Belfast. There is unfortunately a hardcore of people who continue to pursue this reckless and deadly pursuit, many of whom are repeat offenders, and more work needs to be carried out to eliminate this crime.

"Community initiatives and a policing focus on this problem have seen a massive reduction.

"Only recently Gerry Adams secured the continuation of the dedicated PSNI auto-crime team as part of this approach however work must continue in order to address what is essentially an ongoing problem," she said.

(BMcC/GK)

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