Man dies in As Terlaje crash


The CNMI saw its first traffic-related fatality this week following a car accident last weekend along As Terlaje Hill, when a car slammed into the accident-prone traffic signal lamp post at the Northern Marianas College intersection.

According to a Department of Public Safety statement yesterday, the 56-year-old male driver of the car died last Tuesday at around 2pm while confined at the Commonwealth Health Center. The DPS statement did not disclose the name of the victim, as is standard procedure when the victim’s next-of-kin has yet to be notified.

This brings to three the total number of people who have died in crashes at this specific intersection.

According to Dr. Dore Shafransky, who met with DPS investigators assigned to the traffic fatality case, the non-local male died due to blunt force trauma to the chest from the crash. A separate Facebook post claims that the victim was a Filipino male.

The crash occurred on Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020, at about 8:24pm at the Chalan Monsignor Guerrero and Chalan Tun Antonio Apa intersection streetlight on As Terlaje Hill. It was learned from the police that the victim’s vehicle, a blue 4-door sedan, had slammed into the concrete base of the traffic signal light post. The victim’s car sustained extensive damage on the front.

First responders at the scene were not able to get a response or pulse from the car driver. He was immediately extracted from the vehicle and medics tried to revive the victim via chest compressions while he was being rushed to the hospital. CHC Emergency Room staff managed to revive the driver before transferring him to the Intensive Care Unit where he was listed in critical condition.

The driver’s death marks the CNMI’s first traffic fatality for the year 2020.

In 2019, the CNMI saw two fatal car collisions, with the most controversial one along the Shell gas station in Puerto Rico that ended in the death of Sergio Apostol, 67. Apostol lingered in the Intensive Care Unit of the Commonwealth Health Center for over two weeks before succumbing to his injuries.

Kimberly Bautista | Reporter
Kimberly Albiso Bautista has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at kimberly_bautista@saipantribune.com.
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