Decrease in Easter road fatalities

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Road fatalities decreased by 48% over the Easter period, says Transport Minister Bonginkosi Blade Nzimande.

Releasing the preliminary report on the 2019 Easter Road Safety Campaign on Thursday at the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) in Tshwane, the Minister said the fatalities decreased by 147.

In 2018, a total of 309 people died on the roads, while 162 deaths were recorded in 2019.

The decrease in road fatalities has been attributed to the deployment of law enforcement officials on hazardous roads and lifting the limitation on the overtime for officials.

“All provinces recorded decreases in the number of fatalities. The highest decrease in absolute figures was recorded by Limpopo with 41 fatalities, followed by KwaZulu-Natal with 33 fatalities,” the Minister said.

Gauteng recorded 16 fatalities, KwaZulu-Natal 37, Western Cape 18, Eastern Cape 22, Free State recorded four and Mpumalanga 17. The North West recorded 13 fatalities, Limpopo 32 and the Northern Cape three.

Nzimande said 128 crashes were recorded, which is a 46% decrease compared with the 238 crashes in 2018.

This indicates a decrease of 110 crashes in comparison with the previous Easter period.

A total of 807 drivers were arrested for drunken driving and 192 drivers were arrested for speeding.

“The total number of vehicles stopped in the Easter period was 177 182, an increase of about 27 079 compared with the previous year, where 150 103 vehicles were stopped. In 2019, we stopped 161 784 vehicles compared to 109 771 in 2018.

“Over and above notices issued, a total of 1 343 arrests were effected in 2019, compared to 1 598 in 2018,” Nzimande said.

Male drivers contributed 72% in crashes, which is a 10% increase from the 62% in 2018.

Female drivers recorded 15% in road crashes, a decrease of 9%, as compared with 24% in 2018.

“During the period under review, pedestrians accounted for 24% in crashes, which is a decrease of 6% from 30% in 2018. Crashes relating to passengers decreased to 36.8% in 2019, from 38.6% in 2018.

“Single vehicle overturns contributed 24%, an increase of 3% as compared to 21% in 2018,” Nzimande said.

The Minister said the vehicle types that contributed the highest to crashes were motorcars and light Delivery Vehicles (LDV’s).

However, motor vehicles recorded a decrease of 17% points from 47% in 2018 to 30% in 2019.

The light delivery vehicles also decreased from 22% in 2018 to 13% in 2019. Minibus taxis contributed 6% of the crashes.

“The national Department of Transport will start in earnest to work towards a single, national database for all traffic offences in order to facilitate traffic law enforcement generally, and particularly for purposes of the implementation of the points demerit system,” the Minister said.

He called on South Africans to take responsibility when using the roads.

“Although we have significantly reduced our crashes and fatalities on our roads, we can still do more to eradicate this calamity on our roads because one death is one too many.” –