Officials angered by prank

2009-05-06 08:05

Johannesburg - A prankster pulled a fast one on Limpopo transport officials on Tuesday evening, telling them that a bus full of passengers was burning.

"We are worried that fellow road users have misled our traffic officers into believing that there's an accident of that magnitude... that a bus full of passengers was burning at the Nyl Plaza on the N1. That is grossly malicious," Limpopo transport spokesperson Boiki Tsedu said.

Tsedu told Sapa earlier that traffic officers were rushing to the Nyl Plaza south near Mokopane after a motorist called to say that passengers were trapped in a burning bus on the road.

When officers, with Tsedu in tow, arrived at the scene, there was no burning bus but simply a bus stuck on the side of the road.

"One call was received by traffic response... on that basis, we could not leave anything to chance because if they say there's such an accident we have to respond immediately... even worse when they say passengers are trapped because people's lives are very important.

"We believe that this is a seriously misleading act and we'd like to appeal to other road users to appreciate that our traffic officers would rather do something to save lives than to be played like this," Tsedu said.

He said the department, along with police officers, would investigate the matter and bring the prankster to book.

"It is just too malicious to be left like that. We can't afford a situation where we have our officers, in winter, having to drive at the speed they drove at, to a scene where nothing has happened," he told Sapa from the supposed accident scene.