Festive death toll increases

THIS festive season has seen an increase in the number of people who died on South African roads compared to the previous period, says Transport Minister Dipuo Peters. The Minister released the official 2016/17 festive season and road crash figures during a media briefing in Midrand. What is alarming is that four provinces, KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng, Eastern Cape and Limpopo jointly accounted for 61 per cent of the total number of people who died on the roads in this period.

“A total of 1 714 fatalities were recorded in this festive period which is a 5 per cent increase from last year,” Peters said. “We have come from one of the most challenging festive seasons which stretched our resources to the limit, which also put a strain on our law enforcement operations and unleashed untold misery on many families.”

Passengers constituted 40 per cent of fatalities, pedestrians 34 per cent, drivers 24 per cent and cyclists 2 per cent.

She said the fact that an overwhelming majority of fatal crashes were as a result of a single motor vehicle overturning and head-on collisions points to the incompetence of drivers to handle their motor vehicles.

“There is an influx on our roads of drivers who are not competent and qualified to be driving on our roads,” Peters said.

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