Step up road safety, minister urges

2011-08-24 08:50

Cape Town - Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele has called on provincial transport MECs to intensify road safety efforts in their regions.

"South Africa can no longer afford a business-as-usual approach to road safety," he told a MinMec meeting in Cape Town.

Among the priority areas agreed on at the meeting was stepping up campaigns against drunk driving, and the roll-out of 24-hour traffic law enforcement around the country.

Ndebele said August had been a "horrifying" month for road crashes and deaths, particularly in KwaZulu-Natal.

"Provinces and municipalities should already be putting in place road safety plans for September, to ensure there is no recurrence of what happened on our roads during August.

"Each province and municipality must know where, when, why, who, what and how, in terms of road deaths in their respective areas.

"MECs and mayors must ensure that all traffic chiefs provide a detailed weekly evaluation and analysis of road deaths for their policing areas, as well as corrective measures being implemented.

"There must be active participation from national, provincial and local government in this [United Nations] Decade of Action for Road Safety," Ndebele said.

The tragic deaths and the misery and grief caused by road accidents were not inevitable.

"They can be prevented, if measures are taken by all of us to ensure safe roads. We are therefore calling upon all South Africans to play your part in this decade of action," he said.

A copy of Ndebele's speech was sent to Sapa.

  • Virginia - 2011-08-24 10:40

    Mr Ndebele, I do think that it is time that the drivers on the roads in South Africa, especially our Bus, Truck and taxi drivers need to be educated about driving and use our roads. They might be able to drive a vehicle but they have no sense of the signs on our roads, and that goes for many of our citizens in this country, we have far to many accidents, just drivethe N2 from Cape Town to Port Elizabeth and you will see the impatience on the road, disgusting.

  • DW - 2011-08-24 10:50

    The metro police need to be monitoring roads which buses, trucks and taxis predominantly use, especially during peak hours. It is far too often that we see them in their cars parked next to a freeway that flows smoothly if slowly most days of the week in peak hour. They sit and watch the traffic go by. Then you hear of a serious accident in an area where taxis and buses frequently travel and where there are often accidents. Are they too scared to fine the taxis and bus drivers? Are they sitting on the freeway hoping that a 4x4 driver will break the law so that they can fine them? Go where you are needed at the right times. And pull those illegal taxis, buses and trucks off the road. Impound their vehicles and charge hefty fines before they can get the vehicles back. If taxi owners/drivers knew that they would lose their means of making a living if they dont drive properly or maintain the vehicle properly, you will see more of them complying with the law. And dont let their strikes and protests stop you from doing what you are paid to do. It is in the best interests of every single road user in the country.

  • willieman - 2011-08-24 11:07

    "to intensify road safety efforts in their regions"Mr Minister you keep on making this call and the carnage continous,tell a new thing please.We talking about peoples lives here

  • ALISON - 2011-08-24 15:30

    too often i see police cars driving past taxis that are blatantly breaking numerous rules of the road. come one guys STOP and arrest them. it's your job.

  • BigD - 2011-08-24 20:05

    I think the minister has no clue what is actually happening in all areas when traffic departments are concerned. Many traffic officers are not working since the sawmu strike, either in support of strikers or patrolling or just dont give a toss. Until their is 100% dedication from all traffic officers around the country, the carnage we see every day will continue.

      JAVSA02 - 2011-09-01 12:23

      I agree one hundred percent with you.There is very little law inforcement, and where there is, it is not consistent. But, it is not just about the traffic officers giving 100%. What about the road users, us, the motorists? There needs to be a radical change in mindset towards the rules of the road and just basic good manners towards other road users. (and no, I am not in any way associated with law enforcement, but just totally shocked by the lack of respect to what is law, and to each other on the roads)

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