U.S. Advisory About Reckless Driving in the Bahamas
The United States’ Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) has issued an advisory for tourists visiting the Bahamas. They have cited an increase of traffic accidents and deaths on the islands, many of which involve pedestrians.
This comes shortly after the U.S. warned travelers about a spike in violent crimes in many popular Bahamas tourist areas. The Bahamian Government released a statement about that warning but they seem to be more accepting of this one from what I can tell.
The OSAC Report
According to The Nassau Guardian the OSAC said that traffic accidents are often due to drivers who are intolerant, reckless and sometimes “antagonistic”. “Traffic accidents pose a safety hazard in some parts of The Bahamas, primarily due to intolerant drivers speeding and driving recklessly,” the report said. It added, “Cars have struck tourists who failed to check properly for oncoming traffic; vehicles have struck runners and cyclists.
The OSAC also goes on to report a high amount of driving while drunk or under the influence of drugs. They also said poor planning and maintenance of the roads has led to accidents as well. Flooding is another issue they have to deal with on a regular basis.
According to a report from the commissioner of police in January, there were 63 traffic accidents recorded in The Bahamas in 2018 that resulted in 69 deaths. Of those deaths, 31 were pedestrians, 20 were drivers, 12 were passengers, three were motorcyclists and three were bicyclists.
That is not a high number of deaths overall but it is a much smaller population. The percentage of pedestrian deaths is alarming though at 45%.
When visiting The Bahamas be sure to use extreme caution when near busy roadways and crossing the street. The normal rules of the pedestrian has the right of way does not seem to apply all of the time.
Source: The Nassau Guardian