The Nkhunga FGM court has ordered a driver to pay a fine of K500, 000.00 for causing deaths of two people due to reckless driving.
Fraser Double (32) of Maunga village in the area of T/A Mphuka in Thyolo district appeared before First Grade Magistrate Kingsley Buleya on Friday (21st July 2017) where he pleaded guilty to two counts of Causing Death through Reckless Driving under section 126 subsection 4 of the Road Traffic Act.
The driver was being accused for killing a 15-year male old pedal cyclist and a 16-year-old girl pedestrian in a fatal road accident which occurred at Luwaladzi Trading Centre (T/C) along the Dwangwa/Nkhotakota M5 road.
The accident occurred on Monday the 17th July 2017 at about 1530 hours.
While presenting facts surrounding the case Prosecutor Inspector Wills Asibu of NKHUNGA POLICE STATION told the court that during the time the driver was traveling from Dwangwa to Nkhotakota direction whilst carrying 89 bags of rice. He further said that upon reaching the place, he hit the cyclist who emerged into the road whist, while the vehicle was at close range, in an attempt to cross the road from the left side. Inspector Asibu further retorted that due to the impact, the vehicle swerved to the extreme right lane where it hit the girl who was footing towards the opposite direction.
The police prosecutor disclosed that the girl, whose particulars were Mwayiwawo Chimenji (16) vge. Zangazanga, T/A Kanyenda, Dist. Nkhotakota, died on the spot while the pedal cyclist, Yamikani Phiri (15) of vge. Chikango, T/A Mwansambo, in Nkhotakota district, was rushed to Nkhotakota District Hospital where he has referred to Kamuzu Central Hospital and he died before arrival.
The policeman said both deceased persons died after sustaining multiple fractures and severe head injuries.
He further said that police investigations established that the driver was over speeding and did not take due consideration of other road users bearing in mind that scene is a busy trading centre where drivers expect to meet a lot of traffic.
While passing the penalty, Magistrate Kingsley Buleya bemoaned on increase in road accidents in the country. He pointed out that most of the accidents are preventable as they occur due to failure of drivers to take due consideration of other road users.
The magistrate ordered the driver to pay a fine of K250, 000.00 for each count (death caused) or serve a 12 moths jail term for each counts (K500, 000 in default to 24 months IHL for both counts). He further said that the counts should run consecutively. He also ordered that out of the K250, 000.00 fines for each count, K150, 000.00 should go to the bereaved families as compensation.
The driver managed to pay the fines.