Over 18 000 officers to be deployed on the roads

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Pretoria - A total of 18 819 traffic officers will be deployed on South Africa's roads, particularly on hazardous routes to ensure the safety of road users this Easter long weekend, says the Department of Transport.

The department on Thursday said it expects an increase in traffic on the main routes from Gauteng such as the N1, N3 and N4, with thousands of pilgrims and holidaymakers travelling to church gatherings and holiday destinations.

“During the same period last year, traffic volumes increased on these routes from 1 046 780 in 2015 to 1 248 824 in 2016, marking an increase of 202 044.

“Currently the national department, through the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC), manages a total of 12.2 million registered vehicles, 309 768 registered taxis and 61 841 registered buses – with a total of 12.2 million licensed drivers,” the department said.

It is for this reason that department has appealed to all road users to be vigilant on the road during the Easter long weekend. The department said it will also galvanize its road safety education and law enforcement operations to ensure that motorists, passengers and pedestrians comply with traffic rules.

“Our law enforcement officers will ensure that there is high visibility of law enforcement operations and road safety education and awareness on [various] routes,” the department said.

The RTMC has set a target of reducing accidents on the road as well as fatalities during the Easter long weekend by 50%.

On Wednesday, Transport Minister Joe Maswanganyi called on South Africans to be responsible on the roads.

“We owe it to ourselves, our families, communities and country to behave responsibly on the road. Remember, road crashes and fatalities are preventable and it is always our collective responsibility to support every effort possible to curb this unnecessary pain,” Minister Maswanganyi said.

He also urged parents who drive with children to be responsible and make sure their children are wearing a seatbelt.

“We recommend that children should not sit in the front seat. Let’s also make sure that children are also placed in car seats. We call upon pedestrians not to use technological gadgets that will impair their vision or hearing,” Minister Maswanganyi said.

The Minister and his deputy Sindisiwe Chikunga will visit various law enforcement activations that will be taking place in the country.

Basic road safety tips

  • Avoid alcoholic beverages and heavy foods when travelling long distances.
  • Rest after every two hours of driving or 200km.
  • When hosting guests, do not pressurize them to drink if they driving.
  • Do not allow your drunken friends and family members to walk home drunk.
  • Arrange lifts with sober drivers or provide overnight accommodation for your guests.
  • If you are taking any medication, make sure that it will not impair your driving ability.

Roads for close monitoring

National and major provincial routes and corridors, which will be intensely monitored based on the previous year’s major crashes’ statistics are:

  • R573 (Moloto Road)
  • N1 (Laingsburg – Cape Town)
  • N1 (Tshwane – Polokwane)
  • N1 (Johannesburg – Bloemfontein)
  • N2 (Mthatha – Port Elizabeth)
  • N3 (Johannesburg – Durban)
  • N4 (Tshwane – Lebombo border)
  • N5 (Winburg – Harrismith)
  • N6 (Bloemfontein – East London)
  • N14 (Klerksdorp – Kimberly)
  • N11 (Middleburg – Groblersdal)
  • N12 (Klerksdorp – Wolmaranstad)
  • R61 (Beaufort west – Mthatha)
  • R30 (Bloemfontein, Klerksdorp and Ventersdorp)
  • R80 (Mabobane – Tswhane)
  • R378 (Vryburg)
  • R101 (Hammanskraal – Polokwane), alternative route to N1

 - SAnews.gov.za

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