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Drastic drop in Easter road deaths, accidents

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82% drop in road deaths mainly because of lockdown restrictions

ONLY 28 people lost their lives these Easter holidays compared to 162 killed on the roads last year.

This was according to Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula who released the statistics on Friday. 

This sees an 82% drop since last year mainly because of South Africa’s lockdown restrictions due to the coronavirus. 

There were no deaths reported in the Northern Cape or Free State. Last year the Free State recorded four deaths while the Northern Cape was at three. 

Topping the provinces this year is Mpumalanga with seven, second was KwaZulu-Natal with six followed by the Eastern Cape with five, Gauteng with three, Western Cape with three, North West with three and Limpopo with only one. 

Only 11 drivers were arrested for drunken driving as compared to 807 last year and just a single driver was arrested for speeding as compared to 192 from the previous year. 

This Easter there were 719 arrests for road traffic laws compared to 1 343 last year, while traffic law enforcement authorities manned 480 roadblocks in which 104 140 vehicles were stopped and checked. 

Most crashes involved pedestrians and single vehicles that overturned, with contributions of 38% and 19% respectively. This is in contrast with the 128 crashes recorded over the same period in 2019, claiming 162 lives.  

Drivers constituted 42% of fatalities followed by pedestrians at 31% and passengers at 27%. 

“The 2020 Easter period was extraordinary as there was limited movement.  But despite the lockdown there were those that were allowed to travel,” Mbalula said 

The number of vehicles impounded was 236 with 171 vehicles discontinued due to unroadworthiness. Over the same period in 2019, the number of vehicles impounded was 1 055, while vehicles discontinued for unroadworthiness stood as 702.