Faulty robots cause chaos

2012-07-04 00:00

FAULTY robots along Boshoff Street have led to drivers jumping red lights and near accidents in the city centre.

The Witness has learnt that the cause is a faulty signal hub that has resulted in the synchronisation of the robots going awry.

Some motorists have been jumping the red light thinking that the robots are not functioning because they take such a long time to change to green.

This has resulted in near accidents, traffic congestion and the constant blasting of hooters, say people who live and work along Boshoff Street.

Motorist Deon Roux questioned why the municipality did not provide traffic inspectors to assist motorists and to ease the gridlock.

Roux said he was surprised that no accidents had happened.

“Motorists are like sheep. They follow each other despite the fact that the red light is on.

“Some motorists just don’t have the patience to wait a long time for a green light to come on and some just think that the robots are not working, then take it upon themselves to go through a red light,” he said.

A businessman who declined to give his name said it took him about 17 minutes to drive along Boshoff Street from from Victoria Road to the city centre.

Previously it took him five minutes.

“The amount of fuel wasted and air pollution is too much.

He usually filled his tank every three weeks, he said, “but now I have to fill up after two weeks, which means that a third of my petrol is being wasted on the road”.

The robots along Boshoff Street that take long to change are at the intersections with Church Street, Jabu Ndlovu (Loop), Langalibalele (Longmarket), Pietermaritz and Berg streets.

Msunduzi Municipal spokesperson Brian Zuma said the problem started last Thursday when a fault developed in the signal hub controlling the robots in Boshoff Street.

He said spare parts had been ordered and were expected to arrive within two weeks. Municipal staff had been trying to manage the system manually.

The widening of Boshoff Street was adding to the problem, Zuma added.

He apologised to motorists and said that the situation would be monitored, and if it proved necessary, traffic officers will be posted during peak hours.

• thobani.ngqulunga@witness.co.za

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