A teenager is now battling for his life, while his body remains covered in burns and two of his close friends have been burnt beyond recognition, after the car in which they were travelling veered off the road and crashed into a coconut tree before bursting into flames on the Fort Wellington public road.
Dead are 22-year-old Dhaniram Dunraj, a former rice farmer of Plantation Chester, West Coast Berbice, and his friend Kevin Atherly-Ward, 23, of Britannia WCB. Their friend, 17-year-old Parmanand Arjune, received burns about his body, among other injuries.
According to reports, Dunraj was driving motor car PVV 7782 at a fast rate while proceeding west along the southern carriageway of the Fort Wellington Public Road before losing control of the vehicle. He attempted to regain control, but the vehicle veered off the road and crashed into a coconut tree, then immediately burst into flames.
This accident occurred at some time around 21:00h on Wednesday.
Arjune was saved from the inferno only because he was flung from the vehicle as it was coming to a stop.
It is reported that the group of friends were returning home from Bath Settlement after a few games of pools when the accident occurred. The car had belonged to Dunraj’s sister.
The surviving teen’s father, Ramdass Arjune, said he was summoned to the Fort Wellington Hospital, where he met his injured son.
“He told me that like the guy couldn’t control the car, and when they running in to lash the tree, he pelt out and the car catch fire right away. He was outside of the car, and with the tree he start catching (afire) too,” he related.
“So all his clothes burn up, and somebody tell him to move away from the car, because with the heat, they can’t go so close. So he drag till he reach near the trench, and they stretch and pull him and then take him to the hospital,” the elder Arjune revealed.
He said his injured son received burns to his face, stomach, back and both hands. Meanwhile, Dunraj’s father expressed disbelief that his son is gone.
“When I went to the scene, I see the car base on the coconut tree already burnt, and when I look inside, I see my son and another boy burn to death,” he said in tears.
The grieving father noted that he was forced to take a seat on the ground to console himself. He added that his son was in a crouched position to the front passenger’s side of the car, while Atherly-Ward was also crouched behind where the burnt back seat was.
Atherly-Ward and Arjune were reportedly employees of the now dead driver, since they would cultivate rice for him.
According to Bibi Rosheeda, her son, Atherly-Ward, had been a kind and loving person who was always willing. She said the family received the gut-wrenching call at some time around 23:00h.
The Police are investigating the incident, and a post mortem examination is expected to be conducted on the duo. (Andrew Carmichael)