10 killed in fiery N1 crash

2011-02-15 08:03

Cape Town - Ten people, including two children, were killed on Tuesday when a minibus taxi burst into flames on the N1 between Beaufort West and Leeu Gamka, Western Cape traffic officials said.

Seven people were injured in the crash that happened at around 03:00, Western Cape traffic department spokesperson Harold Williams said.

A truck overturned after one of its tyres burst.

A minibus taxi travelling in the opposite direction, towards Cape Town, crashed into a piece of metal that had fallen from the truck.

The metal hit the petrol tank of the taxi, causing it to burst into flames.

Nine people, including two children, died at the scene, and one person died in hospital.

Five taxi passengers were injured and two people in the truck were seriously injured.

  • bjorn533 - 2011-02-15 08:25

    Something out of Final Destination, wrong place at the wrong time.

  • estee.mente - 2011-02-15 08:31

    Freak accident, sounds like something from the movies

  • Picasso - 2011-02-15 08:40

    This is so sad, driving innocently and then something like this happens. All the poor people wanted to do were to get home or to work.

  • Flee - 2011-02-15 08:41

    I have seen accidents like this... where people either slow to a crawl to get a view of the "action" or others are just totally oblivious to the dangers and fly past at 150 km/h. Regardless of debris or people being in the road.. how many times have you heard of accidents happening, at an accident scene... Tonnes... People should be more attentive... Sympathies to the families...

  • Bman_01 - 2011-02-15 08:48

    10 got killed including kids have a heart as much as I hate the anc and malema this is not the place to bring it up rest in peace and condolences to the families.

      rmarkram - 2011-02-15 09:13

      @vdmerwero - Even so, taxi's are their only way of affordable transportation.Stop generalizing as there are many blacks that are well educated and supportive to our economy and society.

      Zondo - 2011-02-15 09:17

      @vdmerwero - this has nothing to do with farm murders idiot. How stupid can u be?????? where is the link???

      cosmic_99 - 2011-02-15 10:28

      rmarkram, Perhaps taxis are their only mode of transportation, but dont you think that commuters should start putting pressure on taxi drivers to drive more responsibly? The country seems to be full of aggressive citizens: for example, the truckers strike that is taking place at the moment - they are intimidating other truck drivers and pulllng them out of their vehicles as we speak - imagine if they applied the same pressure on the taxi driver to be obedient? Perhaps these 10 deaths could have been avoided.

      The_O - 2011-02-15 15:53

      Cosmic you are an idiot.

      cosmic_99 - 2011-02-16 08:50

      THE_O_DEAR, Oh no. How sad. What motivates you to call someone an idiot? Is this common for you to do this, or are you just having a bad day? You should learn some civility and self restraint. Why am I such a terrble thing to you? ****SIGH***** I am surrounded by aggressive militant barbarians as a I write this i.e. I am in the JHB CBD witnessing the Truckers having a bit of 'rant'. If my fellow citizens actually channelled ther energy towards something constructive for a change (instead of continuosly tring to kill this economy), perhaps everyone in this country would benefit? These animals are pulling over HUGE trucks and beating/intimidating the drivers. The streets are full of police on alert. Why is it idiotic to question why certain things in this country are unacceptable to the masses, whilst other things aren't? Many of them die in these accidents - surely this should result in an uprising? I mean, lets be honest, they are SO good at it, and seem to getting so much practice.....

  • inglorius b - 2011-02-15 08:51

    All the whiners sympathising, why are you being such hypocrites? These people have lost their lives because there are no decent alternates to taxies. Besides that, you all feel so sorry here, but thousands of us dodge death on a daily basis driving with taxis, bus and truck drivers that think they own the road, and most of these drivers have really been the recipients of corruption at the testing stations, where their licesnses have been bought. Do you seriously think these kind of accidents would happen if people took pride in their work, making sure that safety came above all else! As long as these drivers dont give a damn about the safety of other road users, these kinds of accidents will contiunue! It is sad that innocent people die EVERY DAY!

      Zettie17 - 2011-02-15 12:07

      Is it the drivers that don't give a damn or is it the trucking/bus companies that do not adhere to the necessary requirements e.g. tyres in good conditions. The drivers can request the tyres, but the company/fleet manager are is the one that should see that it is done.

  • King - 2011-02-15 08:52

    Tragic way to die. Condolences

  • ji - 2011-02-15 09:04

    the wheel turns

      Felix - 2011-02-15 09:39

      We don't need either of you!

  • semaj - 2011-02-15 09:05

    One hears all too often about serious road accidents that occur between Leeu Gamka and Beaufort West, usually in the early hours of tne morning. Surely this is due to one of two situations:- A. Something lacking in the road design B. Absolute unalerness on the part of the driver(s),probably half asleep at that time of night. I, for one, will not travel that stretch late at night.

      Zion - 2011-02-15 16:18

      SEMAJ, I agree. The problem area lays on both sides of Beaufort West. Richmond on the northern side and Leeu Gamka on the southern side. Vehicles travelling from the northern Free State and those travelling from the Cape tend to meet up in those areas. The drivers are tired after the long haul from both ends. Traffic is dense in this area and accident prone. As for the road: Well it is the N1 but hopelessly too narrow to carry the vehicles that use it. It should by rights be a 4 lane carriage way with two lanes in either direction. Overtaking in the face of oncoming traffic is high on the list of causes of accidents. I used that road once at night and it was a nightmare.

      CNA-LOL-BS - 2011-02-16 06:50

      @sema - I agree - that is a very bad road and I almost died on that same road many years ago! Sad indeed to hear this.

  • Umshini - 2011-02-15 09:16

    My sympathy and prayers to the victims' families. Very sad indeed, especially the children involved. BTW I'm an Afrikaner. I wish everyone on both sides of the "racial" tension could just stop all their racist remarks! You idiots are the whiners crying about everything that's going wrong with this country, maybe if ALL of you just stop your shit, you might just be able to help build a better country!

      Michael - 2011-02-15 09:28

      Well said Umshini wami! Condolences to the families.

      nosiphom - 2011-02-15 09:28

      Umshini, you are about the only sane voice on these comments. I am absolutely appauled by the gabage posted by both the white and black racists. We have become so insensitive to death. Maybe some stories should not be open to comments, because people just decide to puke all over the show. I gues some people just have too much time in their hands !

      Felix - 2011-02-15 09:42

      Here Here!

      Notrax123 - 2011-02-15 10:23

      Umshini, well said. We must not fall into the trap of rasciam that certain persons are preaching. I myself drove along the same section of road a few hours earlier, with my partner and two young children in the car, thanks to the grace of God we arrived home safely. My heart and prayers go out to the families of those that perished in such a tragic way.

      james4usa - 2011-02-15 20:43

      So by being non racist you presume all Races are equal. A Marxist Talmudic Utopia. The Sumerians and Chinese may have a problem with that notion.

  • Sydney - 2011-02-15 09:17

    Very tragic indeed...and very sad way to die. The other cause for explosion maybe the fact that most taxi drivers and other motorists have the habit of shaking the car when filling up, to allow for more petrol into the gas tank. This is a very dangerous thing to do, as it turns the petrol tank into a petrol bomb. That space was designed to allow petrol's free movement and to circumvent explosive situations on impact.

  • Mr Hobbit - 2011-02-15 09:29

    How awful, the accident and the reponses! However, when will truckers, taxis and busses be held accountable? How can a tyre just burst, a driver just lose control, etc, etc? The tyre bursts because it wasn't replaced in time, the driver loses it because he drives too fast, or too recklessly. Or the brakes fail because the vehicle wasn't serviced? It's called cause and effect. Until vehicles are kept in a roadworthy state, all the time, people will HAVE to die horrible deaths, needlessly. We will always have cause and effect, but seemingly never accountability.

      Totman - 2011-02-15 10:03

      Tyres can burst, even if they are new. There are plenty reasons for it. Depends on the vehicle, but if a front-steering tyre burst it can cause an accident. Trucks do get serviced and go through checks regularly, but as in any industry, where there are big machinery involved, things can go wrong at any time. Yes, there can be companies that do not take enough care, but that you find all over.

      Mr Hobbit - 2011-02-15 10:58

      New tyres very rarely burst, unless they are from Fong Kong. AS for the rest, just check out the traffic on the N1, any day, any time: there are overloaded pieces of crap all the time, busses, trucks and taxis. Most are not roadworthy. So if you don't take "enough care", then you MUST die horrible deaths, there is no other way.

  • King - 2011-02-15 09:37

    It could've happened to anybody. The driver was probably obeying every rule of the road, but was just unlucky to hit that debris. Anyway I've always wondered why trucks never bother to pick up debris after their tyres burst. You'll find the guy at the side of the road changing his tyre while the road is still littered with rubber and wire fragments from his blown tyre. After that he'll just drive off.

      Totman - 2011-02-15 10:17

      I agree that the debris is a nuisances, but most of the times the driver only realized the run-flat tyre a long why after it already throw off some pieces. However, if you see a driver that are busy changing a tyre and the pieces are still on the road close[ mend that he can walk there ] to him, you must stop and tell him to clean the road. This is a standard concept of first cleaning what is in the road before changing the tyre. Funny enough, sometimes trucks lose tyres at same places and you can imagine how unhappy they can get when they have to clean a previous person's stuff because he is afraid people can think its his and that he can be reported to his boss for that. I had drivers on hearings like that before and they can get annoyed.

      Flee - 2011-02-15 11:07

      I do agree, but seriously the truck had just been in an accident, and i really think that was the last thing on the drivers mind... esp as it mentions the two in the Truck were seriously injured?? Just my opinion... but bet there were twenty Vultures (tow trucks) there doing sweet stuff all...

      Zion - 2011-02-15 16:25

      Lately, what is the biggest cause of tyre blowout: Potholes. It is often difficult to see potholes in the night. When you do see them it is usually too late.

  • elocnica - 2011-02-15 09:40

    We are going to see this on the R55 between Kayalami and Thatchfield just now. These idiot taxies drivers are driving on the edges of the road throwing up dust and stones. The road conditions are deteriorating rapidly because of these guys. Metro were out over xmas period and things seemed ok. But now, huh back to freaking normal. Taxis rule the road

      elocnica - 2011-02-15 09:44


  • Notrax123 - 2011-02-15 09:57

    Most of the sick comments are totally uncalled for and are made by bigamist ignorant people. The section of road between N1 between Beaufort West and Leeu Gamka must count as the most dangerous section of road in South Africa. Not because of the condition of the road, but because it is the section where drivers tend to fall asleep or lose concentration behind the wheel. This is a freak accident, have sympathy for the loved ones left behind - this could have been you or a member of your family - be careful what you say - the fires could be waiting for you for not controlling your tongue... If you have a gripe with JZ or Mal-ema, say it to their faces or shut-up the bunghole for an excuse of a mouth.

      inglorius b - 2011-02-15 10:04

      There is always a root cause for the issues we have in our society! There is a root cause for the accidents that happen, there is a root cause as to why the slinging on either side of the racial divide occurs. People need to look inward and be the change they want to see!

      Greg - 2011-02-15 15:02

      What the F has bigamy got to do with this Notrax123?????????? Whew, you took what pills today? I'd suggest you flush them, ya spewing shit!

      Anne - 2011-02-16 02:29

      Notrax probably meant 'bigoted', Greg. Don't get so excited.

  • TrailerTrash - 2011-02-15 10:04

    Trucks and mini buses cause 80% of the accidents on our roads , we can start by using rail to transport goods instead of trucks. This will also put an end to the yearly "violent trucker strikes" and make the roads safer and less congested for all South africans. Sadly many families will be effected by this sensless accident that could have been prevented.

      Wendy - 2011-02-15 10:13

      Brilliant comment @trailerTrash. Condolences to all the families. So so sad an unnecessary

      Totman - 2011-02-15 10:28

      Your striking start at delivery truck and van drivers. They mostly do transport in metro areas. Using the trains is a good idea, but you automatically increase the amount of of these drivers to such an extend that the traffic will become very congested. These trucks carries less in weight and or volume and much more are needed to get the same load to the warehouses/clients. They are also the most trouble makers on the road and you will have an increase in strikes and strikers. So, the problem will not be solved.

      Zion - 2011-02-15 16:32

      Trailertrash, well said just a point to bear in mind. All our problems will drift away when we revert back to goods trains and freight trains etc. Many people will be out of work and with the mentality in SA Bits of steel will be wedged in the railway lines and those loaded trucks will be on their sides. Look what is already happening in the country with the trucking industry strike.

  • NiceGuy - 2011-02-15 10:33

    Condolences to all the families involved and pray the injured will recover fully.

  • Clive - 2011-02-15 11:21

    For once, it is certain that the taxi driver cannot be blamed. The problem is most likely that the truck was unroadworthy in terms if its tyres. So what was it doing on the road? Where are the traffic cops? Too many of the too many trucks on our roads shouldn't be there - wake up traffic authorities and do what you are there to do. Keep our roads safe by keeping the rattletraps off them!

  • MrBigstuff - 2011-02-15 15:26

    Have some sympathy my peeps!!

  • Snoopy88 - 2011-02-15 15:32

    Heard on the news that there were two pregnant women on the taxi. One woman is critical and she gave birth to twins by C-section this morning. The other woman and her baby sadly died. My heartfelt condolences to the families. This is just too tragic. Just one question - do new tyres burst or is it only worn, non-roadworthy tyres? Seems to be the cause of a lot of accidents!

      Zion - 2011-02-15 16:37

      Hey Snoops, to answer your question: Yes brand new tyres may burst if it hits a large pothole. The frontal section of the tyre is flattened against the side of the pothole and flattened against the rim and thus ruptures.

  • A THEIST - 2011-02-16 08:29


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