S. Africa reports sharp increase in Easter holiday road fatalities

Remigio Civitarese
Aprile 21, 2017

- Limpopo recorded a 30 percent increase in fatalities, from 23 fatalities in 2016 to 30 this year.

Following Minister Joe Maswanganyi's release of the preliminary figures today, the Democratic Alliance will write to the chairperson of the portfolio committee on transport, Dikeledi Magadzi, to ask her to urgently summon the newly appointed minister to explain the alarming rise.

Meanwhile, the Northern Cape and North West were among the provinces where the highest increases in road deaths were recorded. "However, this year's fatalities are still significantly lower than the 333 fatalities recorded in 2015", Maswanganyi addressed a media briefing in Pretoria.

The DA has asked that the minister explain "in detail, why there has been an alarming 51% increase in road deaths despite millions spent on numerous road safety campaigns".

"Very glaringly, most crashes and fatalities happened in residential areas and remote areas and, very interestingly, between 11pm and 5am".

He says human error remains the causal factor for most crashes.

- Western Cape recorded an increase of 8 (57 percent) from 14 to 22.

"Cars and (light delivery vehicles) contributed 69% of all fatalities‚" Chikunga said.

Road fatalities increased 51% despite the resolve by the Transport Department and the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) to reduce road fatalities by 50%.

The Minister said that, nationally, about 61 000 motorists were charged with various offences during the reporting period.

He added that among road users who died, 24% were pedestrians, 19.8% were drivers and 5.7% were cyclists.

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