Results of Provincial Traffic Services traffic operations: 10 – 15 August 2021
Western Cape Provincial Traffic Services implemented a total of 168 integrated roadblocks, vehicle checkpoint and speed control operations across the province in the week of 10 to 15 August 2021, and 14 782 vehicles were stopped and checked.
The Directorate: Traffic Law Enforcement and the South African Police Service have drawn up a joint plan to deal with possible incidents of public and taxi-related violence that could have an impact on daily life, the safety of motorists and commuters, traffic flows, and the ability of motorists to access transport routes.
The plan seeks to heighten law enforcement visibility, monitor all major and national routes for potential threats and risks, and enable a rapid response to any incidents. The primary focus of Provincial Traffic Law Enforcement remains promoting good driver behaviour, clamping down on road traffic offences, and helping to ensure public compliance with the Disaster Management Act.
A total of 192 speeding offences were recorded and 3 013 fines were issued for various traffic violations ranging from driver to vehicle fitness in the total amount of R2 851 000.
Fifty-eight vehicles were impounded and 71 were discontinued for unroadworthiness.
The highest speeds recorded were as follows:
- 161 km/h in a 120 km/h zone
- 145 km/h in a 100 km/h zone
- 119 km/h in a 80 km/h zone
- 99 km/h in a 70 km/h zone
- 105 km/h in a 60 km/h zone.
Disaster Management Act
A total of four charges were laid under the Disaster Management Act and fines to the total value of R5 000 were issued.
National Road Traffic Act, Criminal Procedure Act, and Disaster Management Act regulations
A total of 29 arrests were made for the following offences:
- 6 x driving under the influence of alcohol
- 9 x speeding
- 5 x reckless and negligent driving
- 4 x possession of fraudulent documentation
- 1 x no operating licence/ permit
- 1 x hindering/ resisting an officer entering/ inspecting any premises.
- 2 x inducing any authorised officer or peace officer to act in conflict with his/ her duty.
- 1 x failure to confine during curfew hours.
Fatalities recorded between 10 and 15 August 2021
A total of 13 crashes occurred in the reporting period, and 19 fatalities were recorded:
- 2 x motorcyclists
- 5 x drivers
- 2 x passengers
- 10 x pedestrians
It won’t kill you to slow down
“Speeding dramatically increases the chances of a crash. The faster you drive, the less time you will have to react to emergencies,” says Vigie Chetty, Acting Director: Traffic Law Enforcement. “Reduce your speed when roads are wet and visibility is poor, because it will take you longer to stop.”
Speeding increases the severity of a crash. The impact forces of crashes on people are massive. If a vehicle travelling at only 60 km/h crashes, for a person who weighs 55 kg without a seatbelt, it will feel like being hit with a force of 19 500 kg! If the person is wearing a seatbelt, the impact force will still be a massive 3 800 kg. At 90 km/h, the impact force on the same person will be 43 800 kg without a seatbelt, and over 8 700 kg with a seatbelt. At 120 km/h, the force on this 55 kg person will be 77 800kg without a seatbelt, and 15 500 kg with a seatbelt. (Source: https://www.omnicalculator.com/physics/car-crash-force).
According to a study conducted by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), the cost of crashes in 2015 was almost R143 billion – equivalent to 3.4% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in that year, not including the infrastructure costs. Human casualty costs made up 69.35% of the R143 billion total; incident costs, 14.9%; and vehicle repair costs, 15.8%.
Human casualty costs comprise hospital costs, emergency medical service costs, funeral costs, and lost earnings through death and disability. Incident costs include on-scene costs (e.g. police and traffic officials having to attend the scene), tow truck costs, and the cost of congestion and delays to other traffic. Vehicle damage costs include the costs of repairing, replacing, and having to rent a vehicle.
Crashes have tremendous socio-economic impacts. Crash victims may be disabled, lose income or lose jobs. Losing a breadwinner could mean living in poverty, losing a parent, or losing a home. Losing a loved one could mean psychological trauma and disruption to family life.
Never drink and drive. Never drink and walk near a road. If 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.
Make sure that you can see other road users and that they can see you in the rain, mist and fog of winter. Keep a safe following distance when visibility is poor, especially when the road is wet. Take careful note of pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists.
If you drive a public transport vehicle, be extra careful throughout your journey. 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 are sanitising regularly. Stay off the road during the curfew hours between 22:00 and 04:00.
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 always at least 5 cm open on both sides of your vehicle.
If you drive a long-distance heavy motor vehicle, make it a regular habit to stop and rest. It is also important to prepare yourself mentally and physically for the long road ahead by resting before trips, practising safe health protocols, eating well, hydrating yourself throughout the journey with water, and remaining vigilant about the risk of criminal activity.
It won’t kill you to slow down. Think carefully about how fast you are driving. Also make sure that you wear your seatbelt, that your passengers are wearing theirs, and that small children are strapped in an age-appropriate harness.
#ItWontKillYouToSlowDown. For more information, see Safely Home on Facebook and Twitter @WCGovSafelyHome.
Head of Communication
Department of Transport and Public Works