100s of vehicles removed from the roads

2012-04-06 14:32
Johannesburg - Authorities have taken 250 unsafe public passenger vehicles off the road so far, as holiday traffic volumes peak on major routes around the country, the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) said on Friday.

"Two hundred and fifty public passenger transport vehicles have been discontinued over the last 70 hours," said RTMC spokesperson Ashref Ismail.

"Some vehicles are extremely defective, especially as regards steering, brakes and tyres," he said.

In some areas, vehicles were seriously overloaded, he said.

The busiest roads on Friday were: The N1 north through Pretoria, Polokwane and Beitbridge, the N3 south toward Durban, the N4 from Pretoria to Nelspruit and Komatipoort and the N1 from Mangaung to the Western Cape.

Serious accidents

The Beaufort West/Aberdeen route was also carrying much heavier traffic than expected.

With 1 400 vehicles an hour passing through Kranskop toll plaza on the N1 toward Limpopo and Zimbabwe, and over 1 300 an hour on the N3 to Durban by 11:00, Ismail urged motorists to be extremely cautious, particularly when overtaking.

Ismail thanked motorists who were observing road safety and said it was a "very small number" who were just pushing forward "no matter what".

Two serious accidents had been reported so far in Polokwane, one involving a bus, in which 27 people were injured.

Spokesperson Joshua Kwapa said the touring bus was on its way to Zimbabwe when the accident happened.

"The bus driver had fallen asleep and the bus hit the cement barrier and overturned. There were no fatalities and injured people were treated on the scene."

Kwapa said over 7 000 cars entered Limpopo through the Kranzkop Plaza toll gate from 00:00 to 06:00 on Friday.

"People are impatient because of the congestion and try to make up for lost time, but we ask people to exercise patience and change their behaviour on the road," said Kwapa.

"Everything is under control. Road traffic management is doing very well and traffic officers are busy," said Tebatso Mabitsela, spokesperson for the Limpopo government.

Mabitsela said the province's executive committee (Exco) sent a message of appreciation to tourists who chose Limpopo as their holiday destination, as it boosted their economy.

"Members of religious formations such as the Zion Christian Church and others embarking on their respective pilgrimages to Limpopo have been wished safe and blessed journeys," he said.
Read more on:    rtmc  |  accidents

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