Department says there was an 18 percent reduction in the number of fatalities in the Northern Cape compared to the same period in 2019
THE NORTHERN Cape Department of Transport, Safety and Liaison said on Tuesday that it has noted a decrease in the number of road accidents and fatalities over the festive season, due to the lockdown restrictions.
Department spokesperson, Rennie Andrias, said that there was an 18 percent reduction in the number of fatalities in the Province compared to the same period in 2019.
“Between December 1 to 31, 2020 there were 27 fatalities in the Province. According to preliminary figures this represents an 18 percent reduction compared to the same period in 2019. The Minister of Transport, Fikile Mbalula, will give the final update by mid-January,” said Andrias on Tuesday.
“We are aware that traffic volumes are increasing on our roads as people are returning home from their respective holiday destinations. Others are returning back to their places of employment in the major centres,” he added.
Andrias said that the fatalities included 10 drivers, nine passengers and eight pedestrians.
“At least 20 of the road accidents in the Province were due to drivers losing control of their vehicles or tyre bursts, while 18 of these accidents occurred during the day.”
Andrias believed that the introduction of the 9pm night-time lockdown curfew had “significantly reduced” the number of vehicles on the roads.
“During our intense law enforcement operations that were conducted in December 2020, 17,495 vehicles were stopped compared to 42,660 in December 2019.
“A total of 2,258 drivers were tested for driving under the influence of alcohol, while that figure was 9,703 in December 2019.
“A total of 273 summonses were issued for speeding compared to 1,133 in December 2019.”
Andrias, however, added that 13 people were arrested for violating road regulations compared to 10 who were arrested in December 2019.
“Nine people were arrested for speeding, two for drunk driving and two for invalid operating licences.”
He said that the main contributing factor for road accidents remained reckless driving.
“The motorist with the highest speed recorded was driving at 198 kilometres per hour in a 120 kilometre per hour zone on the N1 close to Richmond.
“In enforcing the National Disaster Management Act we charged 10 minibus taxis for exceeding the 70 percent loading capacity for long distance travel and impounded 33 minibus taxis for various offences,” Andrias added.
He advised road users to adhere to the road safety regulations and to also observe the Level 3 lockdown restrictions.