Nail found in tyre after Zenani crash

2012-08-22 20:16

Johannesburg - A nail was found in a tyre of the car in which Nelson Mandela's great-granddaughter was killed when it crashed, the Johannesburg Magistrate's Court heard on Wednesday.

"The nail was embedded in the tyre... and went through the casing," said Kenny Oldwadge, acting for Sizwe Mankazana, the driver of the Mercedes Benz.

"There was slow deflation... because of the penetration."

Accident specialist Craig Proctor-Parker said he could not dispute this.

He had examined the car's undercarriage, but not "extensively" as he did not have the equipment to lift the car.

Proctor-Parker lay down under the car to conduct his examination, the court heard.

Oldwadge said an examination had been done on the car, and that the advice of another tyre expert was sought.

Mankazana, 25, a friend of the Mandela family, faces a charge of culpable homicide, and another of reckless or negligent driving.

He was taking Zenani Mandela home from a World Cup concert on the night of 11 June 2010, when they crashed just before the double-decker section of the M1 highway. The vehicle hit a steel barrier, which penetrated the car.

Zenani, in the back seat, was killed. Mankazana and another passenger were slightly injured, but neither went to hospital.

Oldwadge questioned several aspects of Proctor-Parker's accident report, submitting it was not accurate.

On Wednesday, Proctor-Parker said during cross-examination that the suspension on the car did not collapse, despite his testimony on Monday that it did.

"There's no contradiction... It's not a total collapse... there's no extensive damage to the suspension. The suspension had collapsed because the shock had broken."

Earlier, the court heard that Proctor-Parker had not attended a tyre course which he claimed to have attended in his curriculum vitae.

"From what I have [been told]... you have been less than honest with this court in your evidence," said Oldwadge.

"This, which you stated [in your CV] to be a course that you covered, is untrue."

Proctor-Parker said he did not consider himself an expert on tyre failure, despite testifying on Monday that he had determined that a tyre did not burst or deflate during the accident.

  • maseratifittipaldi - 2012-08-22 20:37

    A ha! Let's nail the nail ! The driver is innocent. Hail ! Justice can never fail ! It was the nail and the rail ! They must both rust in jail !

  • hendrik.schutte.3152 - 2012-08-22 21:28

    Oh boy, another circus of errors and sloppy investigation/evidence. Even if tyre has a nail in it and it "slowly deflates" that can not be an excuse for a smash like this at high speed that time of the morning? Careless/reckless/incompetant driving more likely.If a tyre slowly deflates, you should be aware of the change in handling, slow down or if possible to do so safely, without endagering yourself or other road users, stop and check "what's up doc".

  • kevin.pitzer - 2012-08-22 21:43

    Conviently .....Why let a little one die and allow corruption to protect and as a driver with correct speed he would have learned how to take care.Stop lying and lying and lying.

  • lynda.pitcher.1 - 2012-08-22 22:23

    he was doing 182 kph on an 80 kph section of motorway. If a motorway needs you to slow down to 80 then it is extremely dangerous........enough said nail or no bloody nail

  • lala.kunene - 2012-08-22 22:41

    .....Black magic

  • iceman196 - 2012-08-23 08:25

    oh boy, what a bunch

  • TdJ01 - 2012-08-23 08:47

    The car will notify the driver that there is a wheel running underinflated, it will do so with a display message on the dashboard as well as a auditory signal. To a competent and aware driver this will mean slow down and inspect the wheel. No excuse then!

  • sanda.mnyazi - 2012-08-23 11:26

    His surname's just not right

  • anton.coetzee.37 - 2012-08-23 17:30


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