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Two 11-year-old girls die in traffic accident (update 3)

Two 11-year-old girls were killed in a traffic accident in the early hours of Sunday morning when the car they were in, driven by a 40-year-old, overturned and ended up on the central reservation of the Limassol to Nicosia highway.

The driver, the mother of one of the girls, and two other passengers, boys aged 14 and 15 did not sustain any serious injuries.

According to the assistant chief of Limassol police Phillipos Papailia, the children were from different families and were being driven home from Larnaca airport after an educational trip overseas. They were being driven to Paphos.

Under circumstances being investigated, the driver lost control of the car and it travelled for 50 to 60 metres down the highway, overturning at some point, before coming to a stop within the central reservation. The two girls, who were not wearing seatbelts, were killed instantly, one of them being thrown from the car.

The driver and the two boys had to be cut out of the damaged car after being trapped inside. The driver and the 15-year-old who was in the front seat were wearing seatbelts.

“Seatbelts save lives,” director of traffic police Spyros Spyrou said.

“Unfortunately the police cannot work miracles. We cannot be in every car telling people to put on their seatbelts,” he added.

Commenting on the fact that the latest police road safety campaign started and ended with fatal traffic accidents, Spyrou urged the president to allow the introduction of cameras on the roads as soon as possible.

In an announcement the police said the accident led them to restate that it is everyone’s responsibility to think how road fatalities can be reduced.

“Police announced a few days ago stricter measures and the state is examining harsher sentenced for traffic violations among a series of other measures.

“The main factor though remains the human factor. It is everyone’s personal responsibility to change driving behaviour,” it said.

As a result of the accident part of the highway was closed to traffic in both directions – between the exits for Moni and Parekklisia.

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