Potrerillos Public Safety Advisory 9/26/2011

Potrerillos continues to experience traffic accidents caused by drunk drivers.

On Friday night, 23-SEP-11 actually early Saturday at approximately 3-AM an drunk driver lost control of his vehicle in Potrerillos Abajo and slammed into a concrete and chain link fence. The incident occurred about ¼ mile below the Potrerillos Gas Station when the driver described as a Panamanian male from Potrerillos Arriba approximately 28 years old left the roadway and rolled his SUV over and ending up in the private property of a Local Resident. The suspect vehicle traveled approximately 90 feet through thick vegetation before crashing through and destroying a section of perimeter fence on private property (attached). The driving conditions were ideal that night, dry pavement, clear skies, now traffic. The vehicle was traveling uphill when it shot off the road in what was described as an excessively high rate of speed before spinning around and rolling before coming to a stop on its wheels in the yard of a home, this according to the Dolega PD.

Information received indicates that there were 3 occupants in the SUV at the time of the incident of witch none of them were using seat belts. It was reported that one of the passengers received medical attention at the seine but was unclear if he required transport to hospital. According Police Officials alcohol and excessive speed were contributing factors. Recognizing the fact that driving in Panama is a dangerous necessity there are simple things that one can do to protect them selves.

Installing a dash board car camera in your vehicle is a cost effective way to protect your interests and document driving events. Mr. Williams from Chiriquí Chatter based in David has installed one and has found multiple uses for his unit including documentation of his daily driving activities. I also have a similar unit installed in my vehicle and have recorded many short digital motion picture clips of dangerous drivers and hazardous road conditions. Anyone living in Panama or contemplating relocation here may find this technology useful. Contact Don @ http://www.chiriquichatter.net/blog for more information about his recordings.

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If you live in Potrerillos you should know the electrical infrastructure is weak and somewhat outdated causing potentially hazardous conditions for consumers of the electric service. The primary lines are the top 3 lines on the power polls that carry high voltage. The power is then regulated and reduced through transformers located in various locations that distributes lower voltage to private homes typically 240 volts through what is called the secondary lines.

Lately Potrerillos has been experiencing electrical arcing from the primary lines jumping to the secondary lines. This high voltage energy transfer causing an electrical surge is potentiality hazardous as a high voltage spike of electricity could travel down the secondary lines and into your home causing damage to anything connected to power outlets. This could also cause electrical shocks with lethal consequences to human beings who may be in contact with anything connected to the power grid. Ultra high voltage spikes can also be caused by lightning strikes with similar effects.

One helpful product is a Complete Home Surge Trap (attached) that is designed to redirect a high voltage surge safely away from your electrical panel down to ground where it dissipates. I have two electrical sub-panels in my residence and have this type of equipment installed in each of them providing protection to all electrical devices served by the panels. You can acquire this safety equipment at electrical parts vendors David.

Potrerillos Neighborhood Watch Facilitator

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