No mercy for N3 traffic offenders

2010-12-11 00:00

THE upsurge in traffic passing through Tugela toll plaza near Ladysmith as holidaymakers head towards the coast has been accompanied by stern traffic law enforcement in KwaZulu-Natal.

The N3 Toll Concession (N3 Tolcon) transportation manager, Miles le Roux, said more than 5 000 vehicles drove past the N3’s Tugela Toll Plaza southbound between 7 am and 2 pm yesterday.

Although his computer system did not reveal the traffic passing the Mariannhill Toll Plaza, he said he suspected that the number doubled there.

“However, this is not the highest number of vehicles we are expecting to pass Tugela per day during the festive season. We expect far more than that between December 16 and December 17, and again between December 23 and December 24,” he said.

He said on normal days the toll plaza opens about three gates, but during the festive season all gates will be opened to allow a smooth traffic flow.

Road Traffic Inspectorate (RTI) spokesperson Collin Govender said provincial traffic officers have already started to demonstrate their readiness to deal with high numbers of traffic offenders during the busy season.

He said about 4 500 have already been caught breaking traffic rules in the province since December 1.

He said 938 drivers did not have licences, 111 were caught stopping illegally on the highway, 769 were not wearing seatbelts, 487 overloaded passengers, 1 524 had faulty tyres while only 56 have so far been caught driving under the influence of alcohol.

“He said the number of drivers abusing alcohol is expected to increase since school closure yesterday and the business closure, which will soon follow. We have intensified our law enforcement,” he said.

Meanwhile, three people died and one was injured when their car crashed into a river near the Tala game reserve yesterday evening, emergency personnel said. Netcare 911 spokesperson Derrick Banks said: “Paramedics arrived at the crash site to find the wreckage of the vehicle wedged under the water against the weir with two occupants still trapped in the twisted metal.”

These two passengers died in the vehicle. The third passenger was ejected from the vehicle and also died. The fourth passenger escaped with serious injuries.

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