Jury-rigged road barrier of sticks and stones breaks bones
Ratanakiri Province: A man was badly hurt when the scooter he was riding at night flipped over after hitting a rock thrown down in the middle of the road that was being used to mark off a stretch of road under construction. The incident occurred on National Highway 78A near the Yeay Tuol Chek Roundabout in Borey Kumakor 1 Village, Kachunh Commune, Banlung Town, at 7:30 in the evening of the 18th of April. The stone was part of a barrier marking off a stretch of road that was being graveled and paved by a Chinese road construction company. The collision left the driver bloodied with facial injuries when he was thrown from his scooter and repeatedly flipped.
The victim, a 30 year old male named Vibol from the village and commune named above, worked as a rubber tapper for “Swee Rubber Limited,” a Chinese owned Ratanakiri rubber plantation. A source at the scene stated that he was riding without a helmet and heading north towards the Yeay Tuol Chek roundabout with the intention of fuelling up, when the mishap happened. The unconscious victim was transported to the provincial referral hospital by kin summoned to the scene, where, a short while later, he came to. His scooter, an unlicensed red Daelim (aka the Korean Dream), sustained negligible damage and was appropriated by family members for safe keeping.
Much opprobrium has been directed at the Chinese company. Graveling and asphalting the road one side at a time, at no time had it seen fit to make use of proper road signs or a properly constructed road barrier. All it had ever managed was to jury rig an irregular line of rocks demarcating a stretch of road that was piled with bits of tree to obstruct traffic. This sort of makeshift barrier was a constant road hazard to traffic at night when the state of the road could not be easily gauged.
Also eliciting unfavorable comment was the fact that governing bodies and traffic authorities, such as the Provincial Office of Public Works and Transportation, had never been observed at making any effort to have the Chinese company fix the problem.