31 who died in Eastern Cape bus crash were not wearing seatbelts - transport dept

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31 people have been killed after a DMJ long distance bus overturned on the N2 between East London and Butterworth on Monday afternoon.
31 people have been killed after a DMJ long distance bus overturned on the N2 between East London and Butterworth on Monday afternoon.
Supplied by EC Transport department
  • The DMJ bus that crashed in the Eastern Cape last month, claiming 31 lives, may have had a mechanical failure. 
  • In addition, the impact of the crash on passengers may have been the result of their failure to wear seatbelts.
  • The department is hosting an inter-faith cleansing ceremony for those who died.

Preliminary reports show that a mechanical failure may have caused the DMJ bus crash in the Eastern Cape last month and that the impact of the crash on the 31 people who died, may have been the result of a failure to use seatbelts.

According to provincial transport department spokesperson Unathi Binqose:

Preliminary reports of the crash investigation indicate that there may have been some mechanical failure on the vehicle and that the impact of the crash on the occupants may have been a result of not using seatbelts.

The bus overturned on a downhill curve on the deadly Kei Cuttings mountain pass - just before Kei River on the N2 between East London and Butterworth.

READ Eastern Cape bus crash death toll now 31, as police struggle to identify one passenger's body

The driver, who died in the crash, lost control and the bus and it veered off the road before it plunged 200 metres. Thirty people were killed in the crash and others were taken to hospital for treatment for their injuries.

Pastor David Mqamelo from OR Tambo Minster’s Fraternal, lights candles for the relatives who lost their loved ones in the DMJ bus accident.

The death toll climbed to 31 last week after a 51-year-old man who suffered head injuries died in Frere Hospital in East London.  

Binqose also revealed plans to install safety measures to prevent future accidents on the deadly mountain pass, which is feared for its sharp bends.

He said:

It is recommended that setting up some sort of speed calming measures on that section of the N2 should be considered, as the road is also known for a high volume of heavy vehicles as well.

DMJ said it did not know what caused the accident.

Meanwhile, the department will host an inter-faith cleansing ceremony, led by Transport MEC Weziwe Tikana-Gxotiwe, for all those who died in the crash. The ceremony will be held at the Kei Bridge traffic checkpoint - a few metres from the accident site at 13.30 on Thursday.

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