Crash leaves SUV wrecks scattered across N3

2009-11-11 00:00

BRAND-NEW luxury vehicles were scattered across the freeway, blocking morning traffic on both carriageways and causing chaos and frustration for motorists on the N3 near the Lion Park in Pietermaritzburg, after a heavy-duty truck overturned and lost its load of about eight SUVs.

The truck, with GP registration plates, belongs to VDS Transport and was travelling towards Pietermaritzburg when the driver lost control of the vehicle.

It is believed that the driver tried to control the truck, but it went into the centre median and overturned.

Its load fell from the trailer and rolled and the vehicles scattered in different directions. Extensive damage was done to the vehicles.

The northbound highway was closed while emergency personnel removed the wrecked vehicles.

Traffic was backed up from the accident scene to Camperdown. Traffic officials diverted traffic to the R103 from the Umlaas Road off-ramp.

Netcare911 spokesman Jeff Wicks said the truck driver was severely injured.

“He sustained head and spinal trauma, as well as lacerations to his arms, and was taken by ambulance to hospital”.

Risk manager Johan de Wenaager from Starplex, the company ferrying the vehicles, said yesterday evening that the load was heading towards the borders via Johannesburg.

He would not give the exact destination or the value of the damaged vehicles.

“I cannot say anything … until I have informed the clients about the incident.

“You can phone me tomorrow [today] morning for comment” De Wenaager said.

In another morning rush-hour collision, a car slammed into the back of a truck on the N3 near the Duncan Mackenzie off-ramp.

It is believed that the brakes of the car failed and the driver could not control the vehicle and it crashed into the back of the truck. Although the car was a mangled wreck, the driver escaped with minor injuries.

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