Accidents rise during low Easter traffic

2013-03-30 16:43

Traffic volumes on the roads are still low because commuters have arrived at their destinations, the Road Traffic Management Corporation has said.

“We can confirm that volumes have definitely calmed, probably because most people have reached their destinations,” said spokesperson Ashref Ismail today.

He said that, so far, 116 people had been arrested for drinking and driving nationally and 16 for excessive speeding.

He stressed the importance of seat belts being worn by all passengers. “People are not buckling up. If you get a seat belt-wearing rate of almost 80% of people in the front and back seats, then that reduces 30% of fatalities on the roads.”

In Tshwane, Metro police spokesperson Senior Superintendent Isaac Mahamba said things were still quiet. “We are expecting it to pick up tomorrow evening or Monday.”

In the Western Cape, traffic chief Kenny Africa said one person had been reported dead. “We have one fatality. A pedestrian was knocked down by a motor vehicle on the R300 near Bellville.”

Africa said there were 12 road blocks on the province’s national and main routes yesterday evening.

A total of 1 474 vehicles were stopped and 683 drivers were tested for alcohol and 17 were arrested for drunken driving. Africa said the value of fines that had been collected on the night was R89 300.

A little more than 700 people had been arrested for exceeding the speed limit.

In Limpopo, five people had died since Thursday.

Two people died this morning at The Oaks, in Mopane district, when the driver of a Toyota sedan lost control of the car, Limpopo road and transport spokesperson Joshua Kwapa said.

It overturned and went into the forest. The driver and passenger died.

Another driver (32) died after he lost control of his car on D3689 road in Tengwe village, Muthale district, at about 9pm yesterday.

A head-on collision between two cars left a 36-year-old driver dead and three passengers seriously injured. The collision happened on the R567 road in Ceres village, Capricorn district, last night.

A 56-year-old man died yesterday when he was hit by a car in Makonde village, Zhembe district, Kwapa said.

Transport Minister Ben Martins and his deputy, Sindisiwe Chikunga, were visiting busy roads countrywide this weekend.

“(They) are visiting various provinces across the nation, interacting with road users during this Easter holiday season in order to encourage greater safety on the roads,” department spokesperson Tiyani Rikhotso said in a statement.

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