NATIONAL – “We have just come out from what was the most challenging festive season we have ever faced; one that had stretched our resources to the limit…”
These were the words of Transport minister, Dipuo Peters, earlier today, as she reported that the holiday death toll was up 5 percent, which saw 1714 people killed on South African roads this festive season.
She went on to say that a large percentage of the crashes were due to reckless driving or human behaviour. She stated that light motor vehicles contributed for 49 percent of the accidents recorded, whereas light delivery vehicles added 18 percent and minibus taxis contributed 10 percent.
She said that since December 2016, various road safety campaigns were launched and many of them were still running on the number of media platforms. But she continued to state that the back to back long weekends that characterised the December festivities posed a big challenge together with the rainy weathers that added complications. But, she added, it was also the competence of drivers that left much to be desired. She believes that this could have pointed to the rampant corruption of issuing licences at the licencing offices and that there is an influx of drivers on the road who are not compentant and qualified to be driving on the roads.
An audit will thereby be undertaken to assess how driving licences as well as road worthy certificates are processed and issued.
Minister Peters also thanked the law enforcement agents and the various authorities, including emergency services and health professional who worked long hours to help save lives.