Low-flying doctor in fatal crash

2011-12-25 22:00

Johannesburg - A medical doctor has been arrested after an accident that claimed two lives in Cullinan, east of Pretoria, Gauteng police said on Sunday.

The speeding doctor crashed his Mercedes-Benz onto the back of a bakkie on the R513 around 18:00 on Saturday, spokesperson Johannes Jafta said.

"The bakkie overturned a few times, killing two people on the scene," he said. Six others were taken to a nearby hospital in a serious condition.

The doctor, in his early 40s, was not hurt.

"Jafta said he was arrested on the scene and released on R1 000 bail, but could not immediately reveal the charges he faced. He was expected to appear in court soon.

The occupants of the bakkie were travelling to a church in Mamelodi, east of Pretoria, when the crash happened.

Meanwhile, three speedsters added R1 000 to each of their Christmas spending when they were released on bail after being caught at speed traps on Christmas Eve, Johannesburg metro police said on Sunday.

"The one who was going the fastest was doing 194km/h in a grey Audi R8," said spokesperson Chief Superintendent Wayne Minnaar.

"He said he was coming from Polokwane and rushing to a party in Johannesburg."

The three incidents were on the N1 South at Midrand.

The three motorists will appear in separate cases in the Randburg Magistrate's Court on Wednesday.

Minnaar warned motorists to drive within the speed limit.

  • Nyiko Ngobeni - 2011-12-25 21:17

    Lock him up and throw the keys away

      ubhejane - 2011-12-25 21:23

      And what if he had an emergency at the hospital and the bakkie had no lights on? Don't judge too soon.

      Sean - 2011-12-25 21:37

      Maybe the doctor was realy on his way to a emergency unlike those blue light brigade imbiciles !

      frandebeer - 2011-12-25 21:43

      @ubhegjane Is it dark at 18h00 in Gauteng??

      PyroSA - 2011-12-25 21:54

      Depends why he was speeding. Doctors do sometimes have a reason to speed, and it might still be partially the bakkie driver's fault. Unlike political schedules, doctors truly face life and death timelines.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-25 21:57

      We should all be driving with our lights on at all times anyway. But that will probably never happen. Another thing. Passengers should never be on the back of an open bakkie or even one with a canopy. Bakkies are made to cart stuff, not people without seat belts.

      Gollum - 2011-12-25 22:01

      As Frandebeer already inferred, it isn't dark at 18ho00 this time of year. Recklessness trumps negligence anyway. People can be negligent (ie not turning on their lights or whatever by simply being forgetful but recklessness (ie speeding\low-flying) is deliberate and reduces any room for error when encountering negligent road users. Just because the is a doctor doesn't entitle him to any extra road privelidges. To gain those he'd at least have to attend a pro tactical driving course and have lights and siren attached to his car (like an ambulance). As soon as profession (other than legitimate emergency vehicles) are allowed to flout road-rules, it opens the door for abuse like we all know with blue light calvacades. The only exception I can think of is if one has a dying person in the car but this is a fine line. Should one life be worth risking many others on route to the hospital? I think it's safe to say there's minimal chance of this being the case though...reckless speedsters going nowhere near a hospital are hardly in short supply

      mbongenia - 2011-12-25 22:38

      if you have an emergency why not ask for a police escort! the what ifs wont help bring back the dead, lock him up, thats purely reckless driving at its best

      ubhejane - 2011-12-25 22:50

      @mbongenia I'm afraid the police have far more urgent matters to tend to than escort doctors around. Who will facilitate the drug dealers if the police are running around escorting doctors? Really, if you think our police are ever be escorting emergency cases like doctors, you need to move to a country that actually has a police force, not a crime syndicate like ours.

      James - 2011-12-25 22:57

      My Superbike does 194k with 3 gears to go.

      John - 2011-12-25 23:32

      Friday, 09 of December, cars on the highway from Durban gave way to a political convoy with blue lights. Remembering 1 man killed by the Blue Light Brigade in Durban, and another in Jo'burg, I protested those murders and raised my finger as they drove past. They proceeded to block me and lunge their cars at me, as I swerved, slowed and pulled away. I held strong and steadfast in my protest! My family, however, were badly shaken. It is time that the ANC realizes that they are not above criticism and rejection, and also NOT ABOVE THE LAW! I expected the mentally challenged to zap me back, or even lay misdemeanor charges against me. But the public harassment and bullying shows that these mentals are in a minset of their own. Lock them up and throw away the keys!

      PaasHaas - 2011-12-26 06:14

      @ John, I did the same on Friday in Nelspruit where her royal highness, Mayor of Mbombela has taken to this blue light convoy thing like a duck to water. I was forced off the road and threatened by a rotund traffic officer. After I suggested that he charge me for something rather than threaten me he backed off - though I am certain that the three or four fellow drivers who by this stage had filmed his behaviour on cellphones contributed greatly in assisting him change his attitude.

      Blossom - 2011-12-26 06:34

      Definitely. Lock him away and throw away the key.

      edward.d.beesley - 2011-12-26 06:43

      Pyro - you're absolutely right: he faced life and death right there, of his own doing.

      Zion - 2011-12-26 07:10

      Ubehjane, Just a point to ponder: The average motor vehicle running with full lights consumes about37cubic centimetres of fuel extra just to keep the lights burning for every hour it is running. If a million cars are on the road running with full lights the overall additional fuel consumption would be about 37 000 litres.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 08:36

      @Blossom. For a devoted Christian woman you are a bit judgemental? Shouldn't you first get the facts before you judge? @Zion. Have some phuza. You might fix the Ozone before tonight.

      Kevin - 2011-12-26 08:40

      Not a lot of intelligent comment. The facts need to be obtained and then decide who is guilty of what. If a doctor had to wait for the police before responding to an emergency he need not bother to respond. If he has broken the law far better to sentence him to community service so that society benefits from his crime than to lock him up at the taxpayers expense.

      Lara - 2011-12-26 08:57

      Whom of you have doctors who will come out to you even in case of emergency? Doesn't happen anymore.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 09:25

      @Lara. He could have been on his way to the hospital. If a patient for instance goes into cardiac arrest, he is taken to hospital and then the doctor is notified to come to hospital, not the patient's house. The fundamental problem with the laws of this country is, people get fined for not wearing seat belts, but bakkies and taxis can run around without the passengers wearing a seat belt? You can't have one set of rules for one side of the population and another for the other side. PEOPLE SHOULD NOT BE TRANSPORTED ON OPEN BAKKIES ON THE NATIONAL ROADS. When are we going to start enforcing our own laws. Were certain laws only written for "some" people and other can disregard the laws because they are victims of Apartheid? Like Jackie Selebi, Shaik, Jub Jub...the list goes on. Our laws only suit the enforcement authorities and courts when it suits them.

      George - 2011-12-26 10:15

      Now what about this, a flying doctor landing on the wron runway hic

      Raxxis - 2011-12-26 14:16

      @Janine You seem like a really opinionated person and your comment has nothing to do with the matter at hand! Bravo to John for exercising his freedom of speech.

      Sharkshoot - 2011-12-26 18:29

      South Africa..where killers get bail at the drop of a hat. What a justice viva.

  • Cracker - 2011-12-25 21:24

    One obviously does not know the details. But it is suggested that consistency will add to a fair and consistent appreciation of our legal system. One approach for all citizens. Maybe it is customary or developing into a custom not to keep people unnecessarily locked up until their guilt is determined by a court of law. Let's hold thumbs we are witnessing what the bail system is supposed to achieve. Simply a measure to add in the appearance of the accused in court and not a system to emotionally satisfy the zealots and racists in our society.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 09:31

      Well said Cracker. Our fundamental problem in this country lies in the courts. The entire justice system is failing all of us. Jub Jub is running around free after he killed school kids, but if you do it, you would have been serving your sentence by now. He can lie, and with every lie his attorney spins the court, they get a postponement for another year.

  • ReunionofIntelligentMinds - 2011-12-25 21:31

    If he was not injured then I hope he @ least tried to help the injured.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 09:33

      He wasn't injured because his car had ABS brakes, airbags and he probably was wearing a seat belt. What were passengers doing on Christmas Eve on the back of an open bakkie? The driver of the bakkie should be in jail.

  • Deepchund - 2011-12-25 21:31

    ubhejane, we are in sumer. 18h00 is still daylight. If the doctor had an emergency, he ought to have a police escort. Nyiko is correct, lock him up and throw away the keys.

      stuart.steedman - 2011-12-25 21:36

      For the most part, the police aren't even able to get to the scene of a murder within 24 hours, do you really think they'll be able to arrange an escort for a doctor? Please...

      Riaan - 2011-12-25 21:41

      Haha...Deepchund, a police escort everytime a doctor has an emergency? What planet are you from?

      dunkyduncs - 2011-12-25 21:44

      so you go into cardiac arrest and the doctor must rush from home to the hospital to save your life.. would you be happy for the doctor to sit around waiting for the police to arrive to escort him to your aid? think before you post.. really.

      Cracker - 2011-12-25 21:45

      Perhaps the bakkie unexpectedly swung onto the road in front of the doctor.

      PyroSA - 2011-12-25 21:57

      If you have enough time to organise a police escort, chances are it wasn't that urgent to begin with.

      Rodney - 2011-12-25 21:57

      i presume u had one to many brandy and cokes ne lol , no one here knows all the facts we are merely speculating , the doc surely had a emergency i presume

      Gollum - 2011-12-25 22:10

      Just because the police don't\can't doesn't mean they shouldn't\ought as Deepchund suggested. It'd be a little more forgiveable if there was some emergency but how many lives are worth possibly taking in the process of trying to save 1 ? Speed on the way to an emergenct...sure, but low-fly (as the title suggests) is very likely to end badly.

      PyroSA - 2011-12-25 22:18

      Until more facts are known, you cannot blame him for adding excessive risk. The fact that he himself isn't injured makes me wonder what speed he was doing.

      Gollum - 2011-12-25 22:25

      I wonder how understanding you'd be if the headline was "Low-flying TAXI in fatal crash"

      edward.d.beesley - 2011-12-26 06:46

      Pyro, again, and apart from the very POORLY WRITTEN article (typical news24 these days), he crashed "onto" the bakkie from the rear in a modern Mecedes with airbags etc. Of course he wasn't hurt. And if you crash into the back of somebody else, it's your fault, all the way, no excuse.

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-12-26 07:32

      If it was an emergency, do you think the oke could click his fingers and the next minute the cops arrive to escort him? Perhaps for an ANC politician, but I doubt for a doctor - lets get real here dude. Anyway, him racing off to help somebody certainly did not help the people he has now murdered in any way.

  • nqobile.ndiweni - 2011-12-25 21:54

    guess doctors can cause mayhem and carnage on the roads, atleast ppl died for those he was in a rush to save. would it be acceptable for an officer to shoot 3 dead and wound 6 cos he was trying to apprehend a suspect?

      Cracker - 2011-12-25 22:01

      Why not? The more carnage the merrier. We need MANY more doctors and policemen.

      Cracker - 2011-12-25 22:03

      Many more OFFICERS.

      PyroSA - 2011-12-25 22:04

      Accidents happen even when not speeding. There were 8 people in (or around) that bakkie, so chances are good that there wasn't enough restraints for all of them. The doctor was not even hurt, so severity of the accident is questionable. Comparing that to a cop shooting 9 people is not fair.

  • Howard - 2011-12-25 22:15

    Why was he released

      Cracker - 2011-12-25 22:26

      Why keep him locked up?

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-12-26 07:36

      He was probably not considered a flight risk.

  • spartanx93 - 2011-12-25 22:20

    why is it easier to get bail for killing someone than it is for being caught drunk & driving?

      Cracker - 2011-12-25 22:26

      You have no idea how easily accidents happen.

      Cracker - 2011-12-25 22:30

      And to get slightly philosophical, we are all going to die. Providence plays a role in it. Why unnecessarily punish the providently appointed agents who add to and assist in the process of dying? We can't for obvious reasons all grow old.

      spartanx93 - 2011-12-26 13:21

      and you have no idea how easy it is for psychopaths to murder and rape. Who would you rather have released on bail? the individual that caused an accident where the in the other vehicle was killed or, a serial murder?

  • Shoe - 2011-12-25 22:32

    I do not want to comment because I get thumbed down unfairly on this forum and I do not like it one bit. You know how it hurts when people thumb you down for a heartfelt comment:(. So, even though I can't rule out attitudes of priviledge and entitlement on the part of the Dr, and most other Merc drivers, there does not seem to have been an itention to kill and maim. That the bakkie overturned and killed those people is totally unfortunate. If only accidents would'nt happen.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 01:01

      LOL LOL LOL Shoe!!!!! Shoe the Mercedes has ABS brakes and the doctor probably was wearing his seatbelt. The driver of the bakkie should be in jail. A bakkie is not a passenger car with seatbelts and if you allow people to be transported on the back of an open bakkie you are guilty of homicide. I know the whole world will be up in arms about this statement. But I could actually give a damn who thumbs me down.

      Shoe - 2011-12-26 01:15

      Its Xmas Bhejane, it hurts when someone thumbs you down on Xmas. Yes, a Bakkie is NOT a passenger car. But in South Africa, unfortunately this type of vehicle has been used to carry passengers for decades now. Let alone that Black people have always been out in the back, exposed in the weather, while the driver and his dog are in the front. Pleaaase don't thumb me down. Not on Xmas, at least.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 02:09

      Now you mention the bakkie owner and his dog in front! I get very very bitter when I'm reminded of things like that. But let us move on and worry about the new horrors we have to deal with.

      Deirdre1938 - 2011-12-26 09:05

      Hi "Shoe" Just a little correction. There is not such word as "Xmas" It is "Christmas"

      AyGeewils - 2011-12-26 09:38

      There are people that go through these posts just ticking all the thumbs down for sport - for exsample the little girl who got bitten by the snake - someone ticked every thumbs down - its like grafiti - somebody is just a bit bloody minded - trouble is - its a little like the crowd reacts to disgruntled players at the French open - if you bitch about it, it only gets worse!!

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 09:44

      @Deirdre1938 Don't worry Gogo, we spell in Mxit language now. It will horrify you if you see what we are doing to your language. But you relax and have another G&T just to get you in the spirit of 2012.

  • AyGeewils - 2011-12-25 22:39

    Again one cannot speculate without facts - but if he was speeding with no good reason - it's just madness - my thoughts for the families of the victims and the injured ...

  • Lee Khwani - 2011-12-25 22:46

    Doctors are human too. We tend to think they are superhuman. Justice should prevail

  • bert.mauch - 2011-12-25 23:01

    Guys, at no point is the speed of either of the cars mentioned; "low flying" can be just an expression from an over-eager journo. And all of us drivers have possibly experienced already the dangers an overloaded bakkie can cause on any road, no matter at what speed one approaches it. Nevertheless, the law is clear to initially determine the guilty party until all facts are on the table.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 01:11

      I agree. The whole "message" of this report sounds like the usual selective usage of words to create hysteria. Last week they wrote a man smuggled kids into the country and 3 kids ran away. I never slept that night about the 3 kids and worrying where they were. The next morning they wrote that it was actually 3 grown-ups who ran away without mentioning that their previous report was incorrect.

  • Robert - 2011-12-26 01:40

    At no stage is it acceptable to be speeding. If the Dr was responding to an emergency, then he could have called ahead to arrange an ambulance and prep the nearest hospital. There is really no excuse to his actions. Also I have noticed many comments bringing blue light convoys into this topic. There is only two convoys that should be useing blue lights and those belong to the President and Deputy President. Blocking them or causing obstructions is IDIOTIC in any situation. If you obstruct them and they are actually experiencing an emergency, then you can be held accountable because they do have camera equipment in their vehicles. The best is to get out the way and record number plates.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 02:23

      Why should the President be allowed to race through red traffic lights and endangering his subjects? Just live with the blue lights. They are here to stay. They make our PDI's feel important. And that is all that matters. The rest of us that work for our money are laughing at these newly rich PDI's anyway because none of them went to school and something like a blue light gives them the feeling of power. None of them know how to perform their tasks anyway. You only need a few inside contacts then you have a passport to steal the tax payers blind. I miss President Mbeki, without his crazy Zim policies. At least he had class and when he opened his mouth I felt like I had a President and not a clown.

      Thandiwe - 2011-12-26 14:14

      His `subjects` ubhejane??? Don't make it worse than it already is, just now he reads this and you gave him an idea!!!!

  • Tshivhombela Fhatuwani - 2011-12-26 02:03

    Until culpable homicide becomes murder in SA, innocent and undeserved people will continue to be killed. R1000 bail for the loss of two lives and several injuries just makes me sick.

      AyGeewils - 2011-12-26 06:06

      I believe - in the case of those children killed at the level crossing in the cape - it has.

      Yvette - 2011-12-26 09:22

      I'm afraid that there is no way that culpable homicide could ever 'become' murder, from a legal perspective. Culpable homicide is based is based on negligence, and murder is based on intention. Two very different concepts, and they aren't really interchangeable. It is possible to be found guilty of culpable homicide if the original charge was murder, but not the other way around. So, at the end of the day, it's better just to charge people who cause fatal accidents with murder, so that at least you have more chance of getting a conviction.

  • John - 2011-12-26 05:59

    Who judged the doctor to be speeding?

  • Xenswim1 - 2011-12-26 06:51

    Any bets that the bakkie was at fault despite the speeding. I have been in many a a position [ at the speed limit] at night where a bakkie /taxi pull off at crawl speed into the centre of the road. Another of the many instances is them indicating from the left hand lane then just turning right without consideration of traffic.

  • Hentie - 2011-12-26 07:02

    I've had many close encounters with bakkies or trucks, going at 30-40km/h with the other vehicle having very dim or no lights at all. Don't judge, the guy could have been doing 120Km/h in a 120km/h zone... or he could have been doing 180. We don't have the facts.

  • etienne.human - 2011-12-26 07:12

    R 1 000 bail? For 2 lives? Gmph, life comes cheap nowadays ...

  • Chum Scrubber - 2011-12-26 07:24

    R1000 for travelling 194km an hour. An oke who owns an Audi A8 uses R1000 for toilet paper, its the same as letting him off. Jeez, you get knobbed R500 for doing 80 in a 60 zone. This is not justice. No wonder the quack was speeding,knowing the punishment for being caught was laughable!

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 11:32

      Chum. Let me just correct a tiny problem here with your statement. People who drive A8's, are people that don't have to prove anything to anybody. They will never be driving at 194. People who drive R8 Audis are trying very hard to prove everything to everybody. 194 in a R8 = Inadequate Penile Syndrome. But I know you meant to write R8, I'm just teasing you a bit!

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-12-27 07:37

      Quite correct, R8. Noted. IPS. Must admit, I don't even know the difference between the A8 and R8.

  • The-Azanian - 2011-12-26 07:30

    They should be released on bail after new year holiday.

  • Sandra - 2011-12-26 08:44

    Fine these guys, put them in jail and lets get our roads safe again. We need more traffic cops. I have witnessed so many drunk people driving but theres never a cop around to report the matter to.

  • Enlightened - 2011-12-26 09:12

    Mbongenia. Come on dude. Hallooo, this is South Africa, planet earth calling. Our overweight cops dont pitch when someone is being murdered on your doorstep. Yes, I thing you should call them, tell them you re a doctor on emergency and need an escort. You patient will die from old age before you get there

  • Yvette - 2011-12-26 09:15

    I'm a little surprised that people are defending the doctor... yes, the driver of the bakkie was wrong for putting people on the back, but that doesn't mean it's ok for the doctor to have broken the law and killed those poor people. Surely he couldn't have been going only 120 to cause the bakkie to roll? At the end of the day, he took an oath to save lives, not to be reckless and uncaring enough with his driving to kill two people. Hope they charge him with murder.

  • dario.siefe - 2011-12-26 09:35

    You are all missing the boat here. The article merely states "a Doctor" as in his proffession, and everyone immediatly jumps to the conclusion of an emergency. If they had said it was a high court judge would your all think he was rushing to court?

      Chum Scrubber - 2011-12-26 09:50

      Maybe he is not even a medical doctor - anyone with a PhD qualifies for the "doctor" title, whatever degree it is? Nah, he's a medical doctor - I think its more speculation than conclusions people are jumping to. We speculate on the facts available, its just the nature of the beast.

  • David - 2011-12-26 10:08

    It is likely that he just sped. How many doctors actually rush to do housecalls? The doctor must have done over 120 km/h. If so then based on the taxi driver/train tracks/dead children case, he should be charged with murder since he understood that he was breaking the law at the time before the accident. Personally I dont agree with it being murder since you need the intention to murder, not just the intention to break the law which happened to result in deaths. If he was at fault he should get at least 5 years. 5 Years for two people's lives is a freebie.

  • Annette - 2011-12-26 10:48

    On his way to save one person , he kills two. No excuse for driving like a lunatic.

  • Bornlucky Manaswe - 2011-12-26 11:49

    There is something I do not understand maybe u can help me, since the maximum speed limit in our country is 120km/h why do we allow cars that clock more than the allowed speed limit? What is the reason to have a car that can clock up to 200km/h while u will get arrested on the spot if u put the pedal to the metal? Why can't the government prohibit civilian cars that reach that speed because is against the law to pass 120km/h? Is like a wife locking his man in a room full of naked women seducing and willing to give it to him but expecting him to behave.

      ubhejane - 2011-12-26 14:33

      LOL LOL Bornlucky! I really enjoyed this post!

  • Gafieldien - 2011-12-26 12:13

    I am sure the treatment and comments would have been much different if the doctor was for instance an ordinary person such as a factory worker etc. I doubt that such a person would have received any bail at all. The time of the incident also indicates thet he either received police bail or managed to have a special bail hearing. An ordinary prson would not have received such preferential treatment. We can speculate as much as we want...the only way to ascertain that he was seriously attending to an emergency would be to wait for the court proceedings. However, no response to any emergency justifies endangering the lives of others. He killed two people whilst "responding to an emergency". What justificaton is there to hit a car from behind?

  • hannesw1 - 2011-12-26 18:32

    I guess someone had a speed trap device set up the moment before the good doctor impacted the (improperly loaded, overloaded?) bakkie? Oh yes, apparently it was the Media24 Speed Team, that's how we know the Dr was speeding...

  • Wayne - 2011-12-27 07:33

    A docter in his private capacity is still governed by the road traffic act ... unless he was a trauma doctor rushing to a pre-hospital emergency there can be no justification for speeding...

  • jdfaiz - 2011-12-27 11:16

    i dont know the details, but a dr trying to save one persons life in hospital (true or not true i dont know) but in the process killing 2 and injuring 6?? A friend was killed just before christmas this year, he was sober the other driver was not. come on people use your comment sense and drive normally, everyone will benefit from it. stop being so childish on the road and have some respect for other people. stop judging others and look at your own behaviour. hope you all have a wonderful, blessed and safe new years.

  • Heidi Powell Wessels - 2011-12-27 21:14

    This dr you pple said should be in prission, is the same dr that is my GP for the passed 20 years. He is the tipe of person that would walk that extra mile that other docters isn't prepaired to do.... He is a wonderfull person, we as a family has been through very tough times the last few years and he has been there to encourage us and manage to chase all fear away... He has saved many people's lifes... He is n person just like u and me.. He is entitle to make mistakes, no one should judge before all the facts are revealed.... Dr. Kriek u have our support and I could speak for all of your patient and the residents of Cullinan whose lives you have touch in some or other way !!!

  • Marlene - 2011-12-27 23:21

    ubhejane, don't knock uGogo !! She is totally correct. It is not, and will never be X-mas !! The word is Christmas ... like it or not. What you do on your infantile, nonsensical Mixit, Facebook, or whatever i couldn't care a damn ! Maybe when you are a little older you will come to your senses as to what the English Language it all about .... Yes, i know i have veered of the subject .. thumbs down for me !!

  • Marlene - 2011-12-27 23:36

    Yes, ubhejane, I see i have made a spelling error. It should be OFF and not OF !! So i got in before you !!

  • eroos1980 - 2011-12-28 12:10

    Just a few facts that everyone is talking about. 1. Yes, he is a medical doctor (and a very good one) 2. We cannot judge until the facts are on the table 3. News24 journo's use words like "Low flying Doctor" to get people to read and comment on articles.

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