Four survive as speeding car crashes off College Road bridge

2011-07-25 00:00

A SPECTACULAR accident off College Road bridge last night had bystanders gasping in disbelief that the four occupants of the luxury car survived the 20 metre drop.

The BMW convertible landed on its roof after plunging through the bridge railing.

An eyewitness, who asked not to be named, said he was travelling from the OK Grocer on College Road towards town when the BMW 3 Series convertible overtook him.

“The driver was driving fast and overtook me and then passed a Corsa bakkie that had indicted to turn right into Alexandra Park. He clipped the front of the bakkie, lost control, hit the kerb on the right of the bridge before it flew to the left of the bridge and smashed through the barrier and plunged down.”

The man said he stopped his car and with his wife looked over the bridge. “The women were screaming. I thought they may have landed in the water, but the car had come to rest on the ground next to the river. One woman had got out of the car and was wandering around dazed. My wife told her to calm down and wait for help.”

The car landed on its soft-top roof.Bystanders rushed down and turned it over, and helped one of the occupants who was trapped under the car.

Another bystander, Mthoko Cele, said he was on the roof of a nearby building and heard the crash as the car smashed through the barrier.

“I just saw the car lights going down over the bridge. It’s a miracle no one died.”

A brother of the driver, who tore the radio from the car as it lay crumpled on the river bank, refused to comment. It is believed one man was seriously injured, but the other occupants escaped with relatively light injuries. Police asked that any witnesses contact Captain Dolf Otto at 082 469 9231.

Earlier at the weekend five people were lucky to escape serious injury in two accidents on KwaZulu-Natal roads.

On the link road between the R56 and the Umbumbulu road near Pietermaritzburg a truck driver blacked out, apparently as a result of illness, and jack-knifed his truck. The 64-year-old man told paramedics that he had eaten lunch a few hours before and started to feel ill after had he collected three load-bed trailers full of sugarcane for delivery. He blacked out while driving.

His truck cabin and three fully loaded trailers jack-knifed across the road. The man was unhurt, but was taken to Northdale Hospital for treatment for dehydration and nausea. The road was closed for a few hours.

In another accident, a family suffered only minor injuries when their vehicle rolled on the N3 near the Balgowan bridge.

The mother and her three children, a nine-year-old girl and a man and woman believed to be in their 20s, were travelling home to Pietermaritzburg when the vehicle suddenly swerved out of control and rolled. The Mercedes crossed the median of the highway into the oncoming carriageway. The car came to rest in the outside lane on its wheels.

Only the nine-year-old girl needed treatment for a deep cut on her foot. The remaining members of the family were not hurt.

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