Taxi accident claims 8 lives

2016-04-13 06:00

A TAXI accident that occurred in Ntunjambili, in the Sambaba area in the iLembe District, on Sunday evening claimed the lives of eight people by Monday noon.

According to KwaZulu-Natal Emergency Medical Services spokesperson Robert McKenzie, the taxi veered off the road and crashed into a tree killing six females and one male at the time.

“Three people who were critically injured and five people who were seriously injured were treated by the paramedics from KZN EMS and a local private ambulance service at the scene before being transported to a local hospital for continued medical care,” he said.

By Monday, the number of fatalities had increased to eight, according to a statement issued by the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Transport.

MEC for the Department, Willies Mchunu said a forensic investigation into the cause of the accident has been instituted and will be conducted by a team from the SAPS collusion unit, Road Traffic Inspectorate and Road Traffic Management Co-operation. The investigation will include a thorough check of the wreckage of the vehicle, overloading, the state of the driver as well as the road and the weather conditions at the time of the accident.

Mchunu said the department would engage with the South African National Taxi Council and other relevant stakeholders to develop strategies to prevent such fatal accidents.

“On behalf of government, I wish to send our deepest condolences to all the affected families. Government, through the Departments of Transport, Social Development and working with the Road Accident Fund, will do all it can to assist the affected families during this difficult period with counselling and funeral support,” said Mchunu.

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