Trinidad schoolgirl and her PH driver killed in crash

Killed: Reshma Rambarran

(Trinidad Express)  A 16-year-old girl who was critically injured in a crash on her way home from school on Thursday has died.

Reshma Rambarran, a Fifith Form pupil at Barrackpore ASJA Girls College, suffered severe head injuries.

She died while being treated at the San Fernando General Hospital at around 1.50a.m on Friday.

The driver of the vehicle, Prakash Roopnarine, died at the scene.

The Express was told that Roopnarine was plying his private vehicle for hire.

Police said Roopnarine was driving his Nissan Almera car along the M2 Ring Road when he lost control and collided with a truck.

The crash happened at around 3.45pm.

Roopnarine, 39, lived at Monroe Road, Cunupia.

The teenager was in the front seat.

Rambarran lived with her mother and younger sister at Jaipaul Road, Ste Madeleine.

Relatives said she was a quiet child who was working hard to become a nurse.

In an interview at the family’s home on Friday, her grandmother Bissoondaye Dwarika said the family was contacted by fire officers at the scene.

“Her mother, who is a single parent, received a call from fire officers at the scene. They told my daughter that she was involved in a serious accident and we should go to the hospital. But when my daughter got there she was told that Reshma condition was very serious. Her brain and spine were damaged and she had a lot of broken bones and internal injuries,” she said.

Her mother, Anjanie Rambarran, was at her daughter’s side when she passed, relatives said.

Dwarika said her daughter was inconsolable.

She said the teenager had big dreams and was working to achieve them.

“She would go to school and come home. She would be studying all the time. She said she wanted to be a nurse,” she said.

Dwarika said the family was familiar was Roopnarine as he had dropped off the teenager in the past.

“Reshma was going to school with a maxi but then that stopped working and she started travelling. He was a PH driver and she travelled with him some times. I am not sure is other girls were in the car, he may have dropped them off. But she liked to travel with him because she said he would not speed,” she said.

Her sister, Devika Rambarran, said her sister did not want to go to school on Thursday morning. “She woke up and told my mother she not feeling to go but she had an exam and went. She stayed home the day before to go to the cyber café to print some papers and she had to go and drop if off and do the exam,” she said.

The Express reached out to Roopnarine’s relatives but there was no response.

The M-2 Ring Road has been the scene of multiple fatal crashes over the years and is considered one of the most dangerous roads in the country.

Penal/Debe Regional Corporation chairman Dr Allen Sammy said repairs were conducted along the stretch last year.

He said warning signs were also installed by the Ministry of Works and Transport.