Wet weather accidents close N3, hospitalise two

2009-02-11 00:00

WET weather created traffic chaos in KwaZulu-Natal, causing several accidents on the N3 highway and other roads.

Two pupils were taken to hospital in Howick after they were run over by a bakkie that ploughed through a school fence on the Petrus Stroom road.

ER 24 spokesman Derrick Banks said pupils at Corrie Lynnie Primary, a farm school, were playing on the netball pitch when the bakkie crashed through the fence.

“Two pupils aged 10 and 13 were in a serious condition and were transferred to Grey’s Hospital where they were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU).”

The two pupils, a boy and girl, are cousins and were reported to be in a serious condition. The school is on a gravel road and it is believed the driver of the bakkie lost control in the slippery conditions.

On the N3, a truckload of powdered soap was strewn across the highway near Ashburton when a truck driver lost control and landed in a ditch.

The accident happened during the morning rush hour, and motorists travelling towards Pietermaritzburg were stuck in the traffic for more than two hours. Traffic was backed up from the Lynnfield Park on-ramp to Camperdown.

Police diverted the traffic to the R103, but when it also backed up, some motorists turned on to the Thornville road, which joins the Richmond road into Pietermaritzburg.

KZN Transport spokeswoman Nonkululeko Mbatha said emergency personnel worked for more than five hours to clear the road.

Another truck overturned on the N3 southbound near Townhill, blocking two lanes. For an hour only the truck lane was open to traffic, and then the truck was towed away.

Mbatha said roads were wet and slippery and warned motorists to drive with caution. The South African Weather Service has predicted a 60% chance of rain in the midlands today.

sandilez@witness.co.za

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