Major reduction in road deaths over Easter holiday period
Media release by Bonginkosi Madikizela, Western Cape Minister of Transport and Public Works
The Western Cape Government has noted a reduction in the number of road deaths on our roads over the Easter long weekend.
The number of deaths recorded during Easter 2021 decreased to 25 compared to 38 in 2019. This is a commendable and significant reduction considering the high number of traffic volumes we have experienced.
As we continue to strive on a daily basis to promote consistency and the rule of law in our traffic law enforcement response, no exceptions were made for motorists who displayed lawlessness and who disobeyed the basic safety principles while on our roads.
Since I launched the Easter Safety plan last week, the Western Cape Provincial Traffic Services implemented a total of 240 integrated roadblock, vehicle check point and speed control operations across the province in the week of 1 to 5 April 2021, and 19 707 vehicles were stopped and checked.
A total of 2 016 speeding offences were recorded and 6 145 fines were issued for various traffic violations ranging from driver to vehicle fitness with a total amount of R4 171 250.
Thirteen vehicles were impounded and 68 were discontinued for unroadworthiness.
The highest speeds recorded were as follows:
- 183 km/h in a 120 km/h zone
- 156 km/h in a 100 km/h zone
- 124 km/h in a 80 km/h zone
- 104 km/h in a 70 km/h zone
- 99 km/h in a 60 km/h zone
Disaster Management Act
A total of 49 charges were laid under the Disaster Management Act and fines to the total value of R170 800 were issued.
National Road Traffic Act and Criminal Procedure Act
A total of 34 arrests were made for the following offences:
- 14 x driving under the influence of alcohol
- 5 x fraudulent documentation
- 4 x speeding
- 5 x reckless and negligent driving
- 1 x bribery
- 1 x goods overloading
- 1 x inconsiderate driving
- 1 x drunk pedestrian
- 1 x no driver’s licence
- 1 x no operating licence
Fatalities recorded between 1 and 5 April 2021
A total of 24 crashes occurred in the reporting period, and 26 fatalities were recorded:
- 8 x drivers
- 2 x motorcyclists
- 2 x passengers
- 14 x pedestrians
#BeTheChange you want to see on our roads in April
“Our traffic law enforcement officers enforce the law 24 hours a day, seven days a week, but road safety is everyone’s responsibility. #BeTheChange you want to see on our roads”, says Vigie Chetty, Director: Traffic Law Enforcement. “Whether we use the road as drivers, passengers, cyclists, motorcyclists or pedestrians, every one of us should take personal responsibility for our behaviour as road users. Please be considerate and careful. Look after your own safety, and the safety of every other person on the road,” she adds.
Fourteen people were arrested over the reporting period for being under the influence of alcohol. Even small amounts of alcohol can affect your judgement as a driver or a pedestrian. Take personal responsibility and do not drive or cycle when you have been drinking. Make other arrangements to get home. If you are stopped by a traffic law enforcement officer and the officer suspects that you are over the legal limit, you will be arrested. If you are convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol, you will have a criminal record.
Take personal responsibility for your own safety when you walk near a road. Don’t drink and walk. Don’t wear headphones or earphones when you cross a road. Only cross roads where it is safe to do so. Wear visible clothing, especially at night. Motorists can only avoid you if they can see you.
Driving tired is as dangerous as driving drunk. If you are tired, pull over and rest. On a long journey, plan to take rest breaks in safe places every two hours or 200 km. Take personal responsibility for your own safety and for the safety of others by never driving when you are tired. Don’t allow yourself to be distracted when you are driving or walking. No phone call or message is so important that it is worth risking your life, or the lives of others.
If you drive a public transport vehicle, be extra careful throughout your journey. personal responsibility for ensuring the safety of your passengers at all times. If you experience a breakdown, never allow your passengers to get out of the vehicle into the roadway because this will endanger their lives. Make sure your vehicle is roadworthy and that your operating licence is in order. Ensure that you and all occupants are wearing a mask over their noses and mouths, and sanitising regularly.
Observe passenger limits – 100% of licensed carrying capacity for journeys shorter than 200 km, and 70% of carrying capacity for journeys of more than 200 km. Make sure the windows are at least 5 cm open on both sides of your vehicle at all times. The Department of Transport and Public Works uses electronic systems to monitor public transport vehicles, drivers, and trips. The details of operating licences are available to traffic officers in real time. Tired drivers will be pulled off and made to rest before they resume their onward journeys.
Seatbelts save lives. Every driver and passenger must wear a seatbelt at all times, even on the shortest trip. Children under the age of three must be in an age-appropriate child seat. Set an example and fasten your seatbelt every time you drive.
Four motorists were arrested this week for speeding. Never speed. Speeding drivers risk the lives of the people in their vehicles, and the lives of others. It is best to travel slowly and carefully. It’s the only way that you will be able to react to emergencies in time. If a vehicle travelling at only 60 km/h crashes, a 55 kg person without a seatbelt will experience an impact of over 19 000 kg! With a seatbelt, the force will be about 3 800 kg.
It’s up to you to make the difference. #BeTheChange you want to see on our roads. For more information see https://safelyhome.westerncape.gov.za and find us on Facebook and Twitter @WCGovSafelyHome.
Spokesperson for Minister Bonginkosi Madikizela
Cell: 082 953 0026