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SA road deaths decrease over Easter

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SA road deaths decrease over Easter

by Luyanda Makapela
27 Mar 2008
BuaNews Online
BuaNews Online

Beefed up road safety campaigns and an increase police visibility over the Easter weekend resulted in a decrease in the number of fatal crashes this year.

The number of accidents decreased from 250 during 2007 to 195 this year, according to the Department of Transport.

"I would like to extend my appreciation to all our law enforcement agencies for the commitment and dedication that they have shown during this Easter period.

"I applaud motorists who headed our road safety messages," said Transport Minister Jeff Radebe addressing media on Thursday.

The number of fatalities for this period also decreased from 319 last year to 243 in 2008.

Minister Radebe said the outcome of the activities during December as well as Easter periods confirmed that government was on course in terms of preparations for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

"The decrease in both fatal crashes and fatalities clearly indicates that all those who will be visiting South Africa during that period will be driving in safe environment," the minister said.

He said the positive effect of both education and law enforcement efforts will go a long way in attracting tourists and enhancing economic growth in the country.

A total of 873 motorists were arrested for drunk, negligent and inconsiderate driving.

Mr Radebe, however, said the successes should serve as a challenge towards further improvement in terms of driver behaviour while encouraging compliance with road safety programmes.

"It is clear that if all role players come together, we will indeed achieve our desired objective of reducing fatalities on our roads," he said.

Transport Department Director-General Mpumi Mpofu said they had managed to decrease the number of accidents despite the increase in a number of registered vehicles on the roads compared to the same period last year.

There were 9 162 847 vehicles on our roads in February this year compared to 8 672 481 in 2007.

"This shows that government is trying by all means to make remarkable efforts in addressing and promoting road safety strategies," said Ms Mpofu.

On provincial percentage in the decrease in the number of fatalities this Easter, Northern Cape became top with only one incident reported compared to nine fatalities recorded during the same period in 2007.

The Free State and Gauteng provinces showed a remarkable decrease from 34 in 2007 to 13 this year and from 61 in 2007 to 27 in 2008 respectively.

Limpopo recorded 39 fatalities compared to 45 reported in 2007 while North West recorded 19 compared to 21 in 2007.

KwaZulu-Natal recorded 51fatalities compared to 65 fatalities recorded in 2007 while Western Cape showed a slight decrease of one fatality from 27 in 2007 to 26 this year.

However, Eastern Cape and Mpumalanga had an increase in fatalities.

Fatal incidents increased from 21 in 2007 to 30 in the Eastern Cape this year while Mpumalanga recorded a slight increase of one fatality from 36 in 2007 to 37 this Easter period. - BuaNews

Compiled by the Government Communication and Information System

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