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Durban - eThekwini Metro Police have impounded 18 trucks since the horrific Field’s Hill accident two weeks ago.
Spokesman Senior Superintendent Eugene Msomi said, “After the accident, we put together a team to deal with trucks, it was a wake-up call.”
While officers previously issued fines to drivers, trucks were now being impounded. “If we find a certain number of faults, we impound the truck.”
Msomi said the 18 trucks were found to have oil leaks, faulty brakes, no operating licences and some drivers had questionable papers.
“We are looking at trucks largely around the harbour area, as loaded trucks are more dangerous if involved in an accident.”
Msomi urged drivers to be careful as there was an increase in freight traffic during holiday periods.
Meanwhile the owner of Sagekal Logistics, whose 18-wheel truck was involved in the Field’s Hill crash and who has since had another vehicle impounded, accused the Road Transport Inspectorate (RTI) of mounting a smear campaign.
The driver of the impounded vehicle, arrested on a charge of not having a licence, appeared in the Hammarsdale Magistrate’s Court.
Prosecutors declined to prosecute, said Theasen Pillay, the attorney acting for Sagekal Logistics, owned by Gregory Govender.
RTI spokeswoman Zinhle Mngomezulu denied the claim. “When you look at a truck (as a traffic officer on the road) you don’t know who the owner of the vehicle is. Only after stopping it do you establish that.”
Pillay said that Sagekal Logistics accepted that a larger amount of scrutiny and attention was expected after the Field’s Hill crash, but was now certain that there was a distinct and deliberate plot to frustrate the firm’s operations.
Independent on Saturday