Taxi ploughs into room

2010-12-22 00:00

AN elderly couple in Cordwalles Gardens in Howick Road escaped without injuries when a taxi travelling at high speed ploughed into their bedroom while they were sleeping in the early hours of yesterday morning.

Dick (74) and Rose (70) Cairns said at about 2 am yesterday they were awoken by noises of people screaming and a loud bang against their bedroom wall.

When they woke up to investigate the noise, they found that a taxi laden with passengers had crashed through the wall of their en suite bathroom.

The taxi was pulling a trailer and had been travelling from Johannesburg to Umtata.

Many of the passengers were children.

The tyre marks on the road show the taxi was travelling down Howick Road, when it veered off the road, went over a roadside kerb, narrowly missed a huge tree, crossed another road, smashed through a concrete fence, and grazed a tree inside the yard before smashing through the bathroom wall.

The accident left the couple’s duplex home with serious structural damage. The wall of the bathroom collapsed totally and other walls next to the bathroom were left weakened by cracks.

The couple, who were surprisingly calm after the ordeal, said it was by God’s mercy that no one had been killed.

“There must have been about 15 passengers in the taxi. Most of them sustained leg injuries and many of them were children,” they said.

Rose Cairns said the driver told them the taxi had veered off the road after its brakes failed.

“Judging by the way he manoeuvred the taxi from the road to the concrete fence where it went through and where it crashed, there was no way he would have been able to do that if he was sleeping.”

Dick Cairns said the taxi driver was lucky to have missed the big tree right on the road where the taxi veered off. If he had struck it, he said, “he would have been killed”.

He said he is worried that traffic volumes on that road are increasing and that many motorists drive at high speed.

“I want to appeal to motorists to be considerate of their fellow road users when driving, because this road has too much traffic and it is getting dangerous,” he added.

With the way people are driving, someone might get killed.”

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