Road accidents

2008-05-29 00:00

A bus carrying about 80 passengers has careered off the road near Cedarville, plunging 300 metres down a steep hillside and ending up on its roof in the stream at the bottom. The death toll is 22 and others have been seriously injured. It is still not clear what the cause of this accident was. The driver is not able to say because he is among the dead.

On the same day and for the second time in two weeks a large truck has run out of control on the N3 freeway past Pietermaritzburg and killed a couple travelling in the opposite direction as a result of a head-on collision. Heavy freeway traffic had to be diverted through the city for many hours, causing all the inconvenience entailed.

It is difficult for traffic police to maintain a sufficient check on buses and trucks because of the sheer volume travelling this country’s roads, especially the arterial highways. Owners of company vehicles often take proverbial short-cuts with vehicle maintenance. Drivers can be incompetent or over-tired. It seems that until an improved and economically attractive railway infrastructure is available, road users will be subject to a permanent state of taking their lives into their hands.

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