By: Kaya FM News
Dozens of people have lost their lives on South African roads over the Easter weekend.
In the latest accident, at least 10 people were killed in KwaZulu-Natal in a crash on the R34 in Vryheid.
The KZN Department of Transport, Community Safety and Liaison reported that a Ford Ranger carrying six people, collided head on with a Mazda which was carrying seven people.
“The critically injured survivors were treated by paramedics at the scene before being transported to hospital for further medical attention. Tragically the 10th victim died in hospital. According to preliminary investigations, it is alleged that the driver of the Mazda 3 failed to stop at a stop street. Although the exact cause of the accident is still being investigated, law enforcement authorities said reckless and negligent driving could not be ruled out,” the department said.
Reports indicate that the cause of the accident include speeding, alcohol and burst tyre.
The motorist with the highest alcohol content was arrested in Scottburgh and his alcohol reading was 2,68 mg/l, which is 11 times over the legal alcohol limit.
Furthermore, the highest speed recorded was on the N2 near Mtunzini in the Empangeni Region where a motorist was caught driving at 170 kilometres an hour in a 120 kilometre zone.
In Mtunzini, in northern KZN, three people were killed when a vehicle rear-ended another vehicle.
IPSS Medical’s Paul Herbst said three people were entrapped in one of two vehicles and all three succumbed to their injuries.
“The jaws of life were used to free their trapped bodies. The driver of the second vehicle absconded from the scene,” he said.
MEC Neliswa Peggy Nkonyeni said over the weekend, at least 54 people lost their lives in road crashes around the province.
“It was disturbing to learn that one of the vehicles involved in the accident in Vryheid was overloaded and it is alleged that the driver failed to stop at a stop street, which could be the cause of this ghastly accident that resulted in the death of eight people. Through flouting the basic rules of the road, the driver displayed gross recklessness and total disregard for the rule of law as well as other road users. Human error and negligence are to blame for the increasing death toll on our provincial roads, which is a huge cost to the economy. Therefore, harsher action must be taken against motorists that violate traffic regulations,” she said.
MEC Nkonyeni expressed her heartfelt condolences to the families of the deceased and wished the injured survivors a speedy recovery.
The Provincial Government working with local municipalities will assist the families of the victims with funeral arrangements and psychosocial services.
The Western Cape reported a decline in road deaths over the weekend.
Western Cape Transport and Public Works MEC, Bonginkosi Madikizela, said there were 23 crashes and 25 fatalities recorded.
He said a total of 2 016 speeding offences were recorded and 6 145 fines were issued. Officers also impounded 13 vehicles, while 68 vehicles were discontinued for unroadworthiness.