Flipped taxi driver charged

The driver of a taxi that overturned at Vaimea last Friday has been charged with careless driving, Acting Police Commissioner Papalii Monalisa Keti, says.

The traffic incident at Vaimea occurred last Friday morning with the vehicle flipping over to land on its roof on the roadside. Initial reports from Police found that the driver in question had been asleep at the wheel when the crash took place. 

Papalii, in response to questions sent through email by the Samoa Observer, confirmed the driver has been charged with careless driving following the conclusion of a Police investigation. 

"Yes, [he has been charged with] careless driving, his punishment is just a fine of 2 penalty units or $200," she said in an email reply.

The Police have appealed to motorists since the beginning of this year to adhere to traffic regulations and to get a driver’s license before driving, in a bid to address the growing number of vehicle accidents, which has resulted in injury and loss of life.

Meanwhile, on Monday evening another vehicle accident was recorded in Vailoa with Papalii confirming that the car crashed into a shop resulting in a 4-year-old child sustaining injury.

"Yes, a 4-year-old child was taken to the hospital for treatment and then released,” said the Acting Police Commissioner. 

“Preliminary information indicates the driver slept behind the wheel. He has been issued [with a Traffic Offence Violations for] careless driving additional charges will be filed upon completion of the investigation."

Papalii, in a recent interview with this newspaper, urged the general public to prioritise their safety while emphasising that safety is everyone's responsibility.

"Drive safely and adhere to road rules and traffic laws. [We] urge drivers to be vigilant on our roads and it is a must to rest and recuperate," she said.

"Safety is everyone’s responsibility."

In response to a follow-up question on the hit-and-run case of Tuuau Faasavalu, Papalii says that the investigation is still ongoing and they are awaiting updates from A.F.P. (Australian Federal Police) colleagues.

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