#SeeAndBeSeen during the winter period
The Department of Transport and Public Works (DTPW) is appealing to road users to exercise caution as the wet and more dangerous road conditions of winter settle in. Shorter, darker days, fog and rain during the Western Cape rainy season hamper visibility and can increase the risk of a road traffic crash. Safely Home data show that fatalities tend to peak in the hours around sunset, when visibility is at its worst.
According to Kenny Africa, DTPW Chief Director: Traffic Management, “during this time, motorists should consciously increase their following distances, bearing in mind that a vehicle’s stopping distance increases in wet weather. It is crucial to have a roadworthy inspection to ensure that a vehicle is legally compliant, especially tyres and lights. Driving on the shoulder (in the emergency lane) is dangerous under any circumstances. Driving on the shoulder is illegal during the hours of darkness which are much longer at this time of year,” he added.
Drivers are responsible for seeing and being seen on our roads. Ensure that all your lights are in working order, and that your mirrors and windows are clean and free of cracks. Pedestrians are responsible for seeing and being seen on our roads. Avoid walking on busy roads when you have been drinking, wear reflective clothing, and carry a light if possible. Don’t assume that just because you can see an oncoming motorist, the motorist can see you.
Travel more slowly when visibility is poor and the roads are wet. Wear visible clothing when you walk next to a road. If you are not seen on the road, you may not see your future.