New road regulations exaggerated on social media

2017-03-16 15:02
The Department of Transport has rubbished claims that the speed limit will be reduced to 100?km/h on the highway.

The Department of Transport has rubbished claims that the speed limit will be reduced to 100?km/h on the highway. (Ian Carbutt)

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The Department of Transport has rubbished claims that the speed limit will be reduced to 100 km/h on national highways.

They have also refuted a host of other rumours about changes they are making to road regulations.

The “new laws” are being exaggerated and circulated on the Internet and on social media, causing confusion among the public.

Various news reports have claimed there are dramatic amendments afoot.

These include:

• Drivers being required to undergo a practical re-evaluation when renewing a licence;

• A complete revamp of the current K53 licence test;

• Speed limits to be reduced from 60 km/h to 40 km/h in urban areas, from 100 to 80 km/h in rural areas and from 120 to 100 km/h on freeways;

• Goods vehicles above 9 000 kg to be banned from public roads during peak travelling times.

Transport Department spokesperson Nathi Sukazi denied these claims and urged people to stop spreading incorrect information.

“Given the high rate of accidents and fatalities on South African roads, the department has made only two new amendments with hopes that these new amendments will help reduce the death rate,” he said.

Sukazi said they have amended Regulation 250 of the National Road Traffic Regulations, which forbids people transporting school children and people in the goods compartment of a motor vehicle for reward on a public road.

He said the second amendment was Regulation 293 of the National Road Traffic Regulations and was put in place in November. The amendment states that 100 km/h is the new speed limit for goods vehicles weighing more than 3 500 kg up to 9 000 kg.

“We thought that reducing the speed limits for huge trucks and mass people- mover vehicles will make a huge dent in curbing road accidents and fatalities,” said Sukazi.

Automobile Association of South Africa’s (AA) spokesperson Layton Beard said they also recently released a statement advising the public not to repeat rumours about new traffic laws without having the facts at hand.

“We are getting several calls a day from concerned motorists over alleged changes to the speed limits, and operating hours laws,” said Beard.

He said it was evident that the public had misunderstood the difference between “law” and “proposal”.

“Speed limits haven’t changed and trucks cannot be pulled off the road during certain hours,” said Beard.

Sukazi also urged all motorists to continue to adhere to road traffic rules, especially speed limits, as they are always stipulated on traffic signs.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  road safety

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