Nearly 50 000 learner transport vehicles checked

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Pretoria - In an effort to curb horror crashes, close to 50 000 scholar transport vehicles have been stopped and checked across the country during the past week by law enforcement.

From 31 August to 5 September, 48 420 scholar transport vehicles were stopped and checked, 210 scholar transport vehicles were discontinued from use and 10 824 fines were issued.

Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele instructed law enforcement officers to stop and check every bus and taxi on South Africa's roads, following the deaths of at least 76 people last month in eight separate crashes involving public transport vehicles in KwaZulu-Natal, Free State, Mpumalanga, Western Cape, Gauteng and Eastern Cape.

In Gauteng last Friday, officers from the National Traffic Unit, Cross Border Road Transport Agency, Gauteng Traffic Police and South African Police stopped and checked more than 2 100 vehicles, including more than 330 public transport vehicles.

In the Western Cape, on 2 September, traffic officers were deployed in Hout Bay to pull over school buses and taxis as part of the nationwide blitz on scholar transport and other public transport vehicles. 

A total of 78 learner transport vehicles were impounded in Gauteng, 38 in Free State, 35 in Mpumalanga and 34 in the Western Cape. 

As part of the new National Rolling Enforcement Plan (NREP), from 1 October 2010 to 31 July 2011, 11 745 526 vehicles and drivers have been checked; 4 847 526 fines issued for various traffic offences; 17 758 drunk drivers arrested and 46 843 un-roadworthy vehicles (the majority of which are buses and taxis) discontinued from use.

"All public transport operators must ensure that their passengers are transported safely and reliably. Basic minimum quality standards must be in place to transport passengers in a safe, efficient and reliable manner. 

"As part of this global Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020, we call upon public transport operators to take responsibility for the safety of their commuters," Ndebele said.

He also conveyed condolences to the family and colleagues of lightweight boxer Bongani Dlamini, who died in a motor vehicle collision on Sunday in Sandringham, Johannesburg.
"We want to convey condolences to the family, colleagues and fans of Dlamini ... and wish those injured a speedy recovery. 

"We are calling upon the boxing fraternity to partner with government against road deaths, and all of us must ensure that this never happens to others," said the minister. - BuaNews

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