Three accidents on the N3 leave two dead and 19 injured

2011-04-20 00:00

TWO people were killed and 19 others were reportedly injured in three separate accidents on the N3 yesterday.

The two died when a taxi laden with passengers overturned on the N3 Durban-bound lane near the M13 turnoff. The taxi reportedly had 21 passengers.

One person died at the scene and the other on arrival at the hospital.

The spokesperson for the Road Traffic Inspectorate, Zinhle Mngomezulu, said the driver told RTI officials that the accident occurred when a car cut in front of him, and that while trying to avoid the car he swerved, causing the taxi to overturn.

Derrick Banks of ER24 said seven commuters suffered serious injuries in the accident.

In another accident on the N3 near the New England Road on-ramp, a truck driver was seriously injured when he lost control of his truck and it slammed into a truck that had broken down.

The TFD Network Africa truck carrying tinned food was allegedly heading to Durban when the driver lost control. The truck swerved on to the north-bound lane where it collided with the stationary truck that was carrying asbestos fibre. Its driver escaped without injuries.

The accident caused a traffic jam back almost to the Market Road turn-off. It also resulted in the closure of the entrance to the New England north-bound on-ramp.

The TFD Network Africa truck was completely mangled with glass, metal and tinned food scattered across a stretch of the N3.

The driver of the truck that had broken down declined to give his name. He said he was in extreme shock after the accident.

“My truck just cut off, but I managed to pull off the road and I put my triangles at the back. About 45 minutes later while still inside the truck there was a loud bang. The [tinned] food truck had slammed onto my trailer and flipped it over. It also grinded against my truck and stopped when its horse was in line with mine,” the driver said.

In another accident on the N3, an oil tanker burst into flames after colliding with a truck and three cars. Mngomezulu said both the north- and south-bound lanes were closed due to poor visibility caused by the smoke near the Marriannhill toll plaza. She said the road had to be closed for at least five hours to clear the scene.

The Road Traffic Management Corporation has warned that as part of the campaign to make roads safer during the Easter Holidays, it will be clamping down on illegal activities on the road.

The MEC for transport community safety and liaison in KZN, Willies Mchunu, will today unveil the Road safety Easter Holiday campaign for 2011.

He will outline a series of events to take place throughout the Easter holidays to ensure compliance for all road users.

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