Police were carrying out a roadblock on the Central Link half an hour before a car crash that killed teenager Kacey Sciberras, a local councillor has revealed amid renewed calls for speed cameras on the road.
“They left at 2.30am and at 3am we heard the crash,” Victor Galea said, as he joined Attard council colleagues at a news conference not far from the scene of the fatal accident.
Fresh flower bouquets mark the spot where the 17-year-old died when the Chevrolet Aveio in which she was a passenger went out of control and hit a wall and an electricity pole.
The crash has reignited a debate over how to stop speeding on Malta's roads, with Attard council calling on the government to install speed cameras on the arterial route.
Galea said the fact there was a roadblock in the area shortly before the crash showed that "police are doing their job well" but that traffic calming measures were necessary. A police spokesperson confirmed that there was a road check at the site during the early hours.
During the news conference, Labour and Nationalist councillors were united in their call for the government to cut red tape and install the cameras. Transport Malta said it is waiting for the outcome of an audit on the road, which is in its final stages.
“I encourage the concerned authorities to quickly do what must be done and remove bureaucracy, to save lives of people and the lives of Attard residents,” Attard mayor Stefan Cordina said.
He said the local council has been calling for traffic-calming measures along the Central Link since November 2021 with Transport Malta (TM) saying that they would commission studies.
A resulting speed survey showed that speeds reaching 157km/hr were measured along the Attard portion of the central link, with speeds averaging at 72km/hr in the area, 12 km/hr above the speed limit, Cordina said.
“I expected the results would switch a red light on and for something to happen,” Cordina said, but nothing has happened since then.
The Attard mayor said TM had informed the council that they were waiting for the results of a road safety audit at the end of March.
TM and Infrastructure Malta say they will install safety features that could include speed cameras, based on the audit’s recommendations.
A visibly distressed Galea had spoken out in the aftermath of the accident, dismissing Transport Malta's claims of studies, saying they were "carried out last night", in a reference to the crash.
The local council has been united even from before the accident, to make the Central link as safe as possible, Galea said on Thursday.