Black spot protest grows

2011-07-29 00:00

A GRUESOME accident that claimed the life of a man from Georgetown, in greater Edendale, has prompted renewed calls from the residents for speed humps and road signs.

The man was decapitated and chopped in half at the waist when he was struck by a heavy-duty truck on Selby Msimang Road on Wednesday night. He cannot be named until his next of kin have been informed.

The three-kilometre stretch from the Machibisa Road and Selby Msimang Road intersection to the Dambuza Road and Selby Msimang intersection has for a number of years been a headache for residents whose houses are parallel with the road.

The residents have demanded speed humps from the Msunduzi Municipality and the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Transport for nearly two years, without success.

The most accident-prone part of that stretch of road is the intersection between Selby Msimang Road and Dambuza road. That is where Wednesday’s accident occurred

Bernard Khoza, who was walking home with the man when the accident occurred, said he had been standing on the opposite side of the road at the time.

“As the truck, which was headed towards town, hit him I looked away … I only heard a bang. We contacted the police and the truck driver reported the matter to the police,” said Khoza.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant Joey Jeevan confirmed that a case of culpable homicide has been opened.

Residents whose houses are next to the black spot intersection said they have been urging the municipality to install speed humps, but the municipality has told them the road is the responsibility of the Transport Department.

Sipho Msimang, who had his fence bashed in by a car two weeks ago, showed The Witness a written appeal he made to the municipality and the department in May 2010 to install traffic calming measures. It has not yielded results.

He said the intersection is a danger to motorists and pupils from the primary and high schools who cross the intersection on their way to and from school.

Said a resident who declined to be named, “Every week three or four accidents happen at the intersection. We have seen schoolchildren being hit by cars. Some die and some survive.”

Transport Department spokesperson Kwanele Ncalane confirmed that the department has received complaints from residents about speeding motorists there. He said the department is equally concerned about the black spot.

“In a few weeks’ time we are going to start installing rumble strips, road signs and speed humps. The project will be completed by end of August,” said Ncalane.

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