Fewer Easter deaths on KZN roads

2012-04-10 00:00

DESPITE some terrible crashes, fewer people died on KZN roads this Easter than last year.

By the time of going to press, 32 people had died on KwaZulu-Natal’s roads since Good Friday, compared with 43 in 2011.

Last year KZN had the highest death toll in the country.

“Even though there’s quite a difference, it’s regrettable that we’re still losing people on the roads,” said Transport Department spokesperson Kwanele Ncalane.

He said motorists are starting to adhere to traffic laws — but there is still a long way to go.

A total of 32 000 vehicles were stopped since the beginning of the Easter weekend.

Out of these, 150 drivers were detained for drunken driving.

Ncalane praised traffic officers and police for doing a good job on the roads, and called on the justice system to take harsh action against offenders.

Ignoring the law is the main factor that causes accidents, followed by fatigue and speeding, according to the department.

The falling trend was evident countrywide, with 109 fatalities by yesterday afternoon, compared with 297 last Easter, said Road Traffic Management Corporation spokesperson Ashref Ismail, cautioning that deaths until midnight would be included in the final toll, as would anyone injured at the weekend who died within 30 days.

KZN Road Traffic Inspectorate spokesperson Zinhle Mngomezulu said there was heavy traffic flow from KZN to Gauteng yesterday.

In the afternoon, between 2 000 to 3 000 vehicles per hour were passing through the Mooi River Plaza toll gate, up from 1 500 on Sunday.

KZN is the most popular province for holidaymakers during the Easter and Christmas seasons.

The N3 was heavily congested, but there were no fatal accidents reported yesterday. Netcare911 spokesperson Jeffrey Wicks said since Friday their paramedics attended to 251 vehicle collisions and 32 pedestrian-vehicle accidents across the country.

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