Kruger fines nearly 3 400 visitors

2013-08-25 17:33

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Mbombela - The Kruger National Park has issued nearly 3 400 fines to visitors in the past eight months, which is more than during the whole of 2012.

The fines were issued for speeding and other traffic offences, as well as contravening the National Environmental Management Act.

“Since the beginning of this year we have issued 3 339 fines, while last year we issued a total of 3 157 fines,” Kruger spokesman Stephens Ledwaba told African Eye News Service.

He attributed the increase to greater law enforcement within the Kruger.

“The high number this year can be attributed to the additional traffic officers added to our team. We have speeding cameras for every traffic officer. These cameras are mobile and not stationed at one place,” he explained.

According to Kruger chief traffic officer, Johan Nel, most offenders were South African residents while 35% were foreigners.

“We try and make sure [foreigners] pay before leaving the park, as when they leave the country, there is no way we can trace them,” Nel said.

Ledwaba said speeding was the main concern for traffic officers, with 80% of fines issued to motorists breaking the park’s 50km/h speed limit.

“Speeding is a danger for animals as they get killed in the process and it also puts people's lives at risk. Speeding motorists also chase the animals off the road and often spoil great sightings for animal lovers,” Ledwaba said.

Fines for speeding in the Kruger range from R100 to R1 500.

On 8 May last year, a speeding driver was fined R2 500 after he drove his car into a herd of impala, killing seven of the animals. A further fine of R21 000 was imposed on the man’s employers.

Ledwaba said that traffic officers patrolled the Kruger daily to ensure that motorists comply with rules and regulations of the park.

The regulations are clearly posted on notice boards at the gates.

TV screens have also been installed at the gates and reception areas to display the rules of the park.

The number of fines issued is expected to increase dramatically over December and January as thousands of tourists descend on the park.

Kruger figures showed that 811 fines were issued in the 2012 festive season alone.

Read more on:    kruger national park

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