(Guardian mystery) – If archive police records of deadly road accidents in Guyana and the stories of dozens of survivors and witnesses are anything to go by, then a now-condemned curving 300 yard piece of roadway that sits along the Sarah Public Road at Mahaicony, may have taken more lives than any other piece of roadway with the same measurement ratio in the Caribbean.
While the roadway’s sudden 90-degree turn and careless driving was largely to blame for the many deadly accidents that had occurred there for over three decades, many survivors have argued that some other unexplained force was actually afoot.
From surviving-drivers who claimed to have experienced a sudden blackout (rapid unconsciousness) while traversing the turn, to other motorists who claimed that there was an unexplained loss of control of their steering wheel before a fatal accident there, eerie tales about this particular piece of carriageway lay abound.
Others told tales of dangerously swerving to avoid hitting a crowd of people in the middle of the road, but later discovering that no one was actually there, while those that had perished in terrible ways, never got a chance to say what could have caused them to fatally swerve off from the road.
For one retired traffic rank of the Guyana Police Force, almost every surviving driver had a “jumbie” story to tell, or could not explain any of it at all.
But for him, none of those paranormal claims or strange stories could have made it into the police record books, because Magistrate’s and prosecutors or even the Commander himself would have roasted any rank who wrote down that “spiritual nonsense” as a statement.
Hence, each paranormal report simply stated that “the driver claimed that he lost control of the vehicle while maneuvering the turn”. End of story.
But even if we were to disbelief every motorist that had told a ghostly story about the turn-of-death, the stories of persons who tried to erect structures there or conduct other activities there might be reason enough to accept that there is something ghostly about that turn.
For 74-year-old Lalchand, a retired building foreman, his knowledge surrounding a worker whose life was lost while trying to work on a now-abandoned structure around that turn is enough to keep him away from it.
Sitting down for a chat with the Guyana Guardian outside of a noisy bar in proximity to the Mahaicony market area, he appeared to be too drunk to walk, but sober enough to share his experiences about the “turn-of-death”.
“Me wuk round da area, and me survive wan bad accident deh. So me know nuff bout dat turn”, he said in a sloppy dialect, as if he was struggling to form his words.
(Translated: “I worked around that area, and had survived a serious accident there. So I have a lot of knowledge about that carriageway”)
Speaking about a structure that he was sub-contracted to build on the turn-of-death, he vividly recollects the incident in which a young man had mysteriously fallen to his death after a paranormal encounter there, but could not recall what year it was.
“De last bady wah dead after wukkin pon wan house round deh, bin tell me at de hospital (before he succumbed) dat wan strange white-lady suddenly halla in he face when he bin pan de scaffle doin lil fine wuk by a window round 6-a-clack time; and he fall aff”, said Lalchand in strong Guyanese Creole language, as he sipped intermittently from a glass laced with rum.
(Translated: “The last victim that died after working on a property there, had told me that he was on a building scaffold doing some finishing work on a window sometime after 6pm, when a ghostly ‘white lady’ screamed in his face, thus causing him to lost his balance, and fell”)
Thereafter, owners of two other structures that were being constructed there were forced to abandoned work, claiming that there were also a series of paranormal activities that were impeding construction work.
So fearsome were the seemingly supernatural incidents around the turn-of-death, that road builders refused to even use a more convenient portion of it to connect to a new roadway that the government of Guyana was building to shorten the time it will take to get to Berbice via the Mahaicony bridge.
Instead, Government was forced to approve an alternate plan to build a wider double turn and thus completely avoided using any part of the single turn-of-death to connect the new road.
But several years later, rice farmers began to use the same abandoned roadway once again to dry paddy.
However, when a tractor-trailer somehow became detached and pinned a labourer’s leg to the roadway, just around 6:30pm one evening, as he was loading bags of paddy for transport back to a bond, the others who witnessed the incident simply decided to flee.
Because for those who had fled that evening, it remains their belief that the turn-of-death is still very much eager to add more souls to the dark annals of its scary history.
However, there are about five other people who lives within the precinct of that very carriageway, and who explained that (even though they would not risk walking through it at nights) they had never experienced anything paranormal in their homes, or have any reason to believe that the turn itself is haunted by a spiritual force.
So on the other side of the coin, it will be fair to say that maybe all of these incidents were just an exaggerated coincidence, that has nothing to do with ghosts, the paranormal, or the unexplained.
Maybe there is really nothing abnormal about more than thirty deadly accidents happening at the same spot or nothing strange about more than 40 people dying at the same spot on different days but all at around the same time of the night.
Probably that is quite normal for a lot of people.
But if you have any doubts, all you have to do is go and spend just one evening out there, and I am sure that we will be able to know if this is all an urban legend, or if there is really something supernatural that is lurking there.
After all, even though the Government has advised against any vehicle driving through that turn today, that piece of the carriageway is still waiting for its next brave visitor to come by, preferably under the darkness of the night.
Would you like to volunteer?