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VIPD: Two St. Croix Men Die In Fiery Crash Near Limetree Bay Refinery On Friday Night

CHRISTIANSTED — Two men are dead in a single-car accident on St. Croix after their vehicle lost control in a turn, striking a wall before impacting a large boulder and bursting into flames near the main building at Limetree Bay Refinery in Estate Hope.

Bernard Matthew, 28, was driving a white Toyota Yaris and passing vehicles in the straightaway near the South Shore oil refinery when the car crashed into the wall and some rock boulders near Limetree Bay’s administrative building about 11:38 p.m. on Friday, the Virgin Islands Police Department said.

PASSENGER KILLED IN CRASH: Derrick Liburd, 28, on St. Croix.

The force of the collision caused the car to overturn and left Matthew and his passenger, 28-year-old Derrick Liburd, trapped inside the vehicle as it caught on fire, according to the VIPD.

VIPD’s Traffic Division,  firefighters from the Virgin Islands Fire Service and EMTs responded only to find Matthew and Liburd burned to death, VIPD spokesman Glen Dratte said.

Bernard Matthew’s Toyota Yaris on fire Friday night.

A preliminary police investigation revealed that Matthew’s Yaris was traveling at a high rate of speed westbound on the Hess Road passing vehicles when he lost control in the turn by the main Limetree building “impacting the wall then the large boulders causing the vehicle to flip and catch on fire,” according to Dratte.

Matthew and Liburd’s bodies were identified by next of kin.

The Toyota Yaris in the morning after the crash.
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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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