Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele decries road fatalities and calls for a review of Speed Limit Legislation
20 Sep 2011
The Minister of Transport Sibusiso Ndebele says the road carnage on our country’s roads is fastly reaching a crisis point.
The Minister has announced that the Ministry of Transport will soon escalate the matter to cabinet with the intention of requesting a review of the current legislation governing the speed limits on our roads.
He made the announcement at the scene of yet another horrific accident on the N2 between Empangeni and Mtubatuba in northern KwaZulu-Natal today.
The accident, involving a mini-bus taxi and a van towing a trailer, claimed 10 lives.
The deceased were part of 18 passengers (including two children thought to be under the age of four) travelling from Durban to Mtubatuba last night.
The survivors, including the driver of the van, were admitted to nearby hospitals and they are in critical but stable conditions.
The Minister visited all the survivors, including an unidentified child whose parent/s is/are thought to be among the deceased.
He has called on all the people of this country who use our roads to act responsibly to avoid going down in history as having created a grave.
“This unnecessary loss of lives on a daily basis calls for a serious review of the current status quo. We cannot afford to have this situation continue like this. South Africa is being robbed of its most prized assets: its citizens. Families are losing their loved ones, widows and orphans are being created every minute on our roads,” says Minister Ndebele.
In August alone, 76 people are reported to have been killed in eight separate accidents involving public transport while 50 people are so far declared to have died using public transport this month alone.
The Minister says he will ask cabinet to look into the possibility of reducing the current 120 km/h speed limit to 100 km/h.
“There are increasing calls and signs that something drastic needs to be done to arrest the current situation. Studies conducted in other countries such as Australia where the speed limit is 110 km/h indicate that a reduction in speed limit can save lives,” says Minister Ndebele.
The Minister also wants a partnership with the people of South Africa to address this worrying situation.
The Ministry will escalate its road safety campaign in the coming weeks, focussing on encouraging citizens to blow the whistle against reckless, negligent and dangerous driving. Citizens are encouraged to use the transport hotline number: 0861 400 800 to report all road offences and vehicles that appear to be un-road worthy.
“Traffic law enforcers cannot be everywhere at any given time hence our call to the public to take responsibility and work with government in our efforts to eradicate the road carnage in our country. We will continue to deploy traffic officials in strategic and critical parts on our roads to increase visibility but we call on members of the public to partner with us and help us police areas that we cannot reach,” says Minister Ndebele.
During the month of October, the Ministry of Transport will focus primarily on road safety, particularly public transport in line with the National Rolling Enforcement Plan (NREP) that seeks to have at least 1-million cars stopped every month.
Minister Ndebele is optimistic that working together with citizens, South Africa will win the fight against road crashes that kill people in large numbers daily.
Cell: 083 800 9936 or 082 997 2323
Issued by: Department of Transport
20 Sep 2011
[ Top ]