KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala has called for a thorough investigation into the horrific crash that claimed 12 lives on the R612 between Highflats and Ixopo.
The accident involving three trucks, a bakkie and a mini-bus taxi, happened last Thursday when a minibus taxi collided with a tipper-truck. The majority of the victims were women, who were all travelling in the minibus.
Zikalala – accompanied by Transport, Community Safety and Liaison MEC, Neliswa Peggy Nkonyeni; District Mayor Zamo Gwala and chairperson of the KZN House of Traditional Leaders Inkosi Chiliza – visited the scene of the accident on Friday, to conduct a physical inspection of the road where the accident occurred and met with the bereaved families.
The Premier said a crack team from Gauteng is already on the ground, combing the scene and examining the infrastructure, including the vehicles and the drivers’ behaviour on the day.
“Our preliminary information is that this was due mainly to human error. The majority of accidents on our roads are avoidable. In the majority of cases, it is human error and a failure to adhere to the rules of the road which is responsible for the high carnage on our roads.
“On behalf of the provincial government, we wish to pay our sincerest condolences to the families of the 12 victims of this accident. We also wish the survivors, who are in hospital, a speedy recovery,” Zikalala said.
The provincial government’s policy dictates that where more than four people died in an accident, government must assist with the burial and related costs.
Zikalala, meanwhile, announced that the provincial government will revive the Siyabakhumbula Road Safety Awareness campaign (We Remember Them) and at the same time, tighten the province’s enforcement operations.
“We must return to the slogan ‘KwaZulu-Natal, Alufakwa lubuya nesaphulamthetho’, which ensures zero tolerance on all our roads,” Zikalala said. – SAnews.gov.za