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Durban - A woman who had just dropped off her daughter at uShaka Marine World yesterday was hit by a taxi as she got out of her vehicle.
Janet Hayman, 57, was killed, and the taxi driver - who faced the wrath of the victim’s son, who tried to attack him after the accident - was arrested.
It was the fourth fatal accident involving taxis in as many days.
uShaka’s chief executive, Shawn Thompson, said staff at the park rushed to help the woman, but her injuries were too severe and she died before an ambulance arrived.
Hayman’s husband, Jack, said from their Glenmore home today that when he went to the police van to confront the taxi driver, he found him with his phone to his ear “and a big smile on his face”.
“It’s hard to lose a wife and a mom. When you see a parent squashed like that, with no legs and body parts all over, it is hard.
“And this happened in an area where you are not supposed to be doing more than 5km,” he said.
He said the taxi driver must have been driving at 100km when he began swerving and drove straight into his wife.
“This was just not a normal little accident - she was mince all over. How could it happen in an area like that?”
Jack, who was in tears, said he hoped that the news of the accident did not just die down because taxi drivers had become arrogant and did as they pleased on the roads.
Rescue Care Emergency Services spokesman, Garrith Jamieson, said Hayman had apparently parked to the left of the traffic circle outside uShaka and was hit by the taxi as she got out of her car.
“Four passengers from the taxi also sustained minor injuries and were stabilised on the scene before being transported to a local hospital.”
Police spokesman, Captain Thulani Zwane, confirmed that Hayman was run over just before 9am.
He said the 23-year-old taxi driver was expected to appear in the Durban Magistrate’s Court today on a charge of culpable homicide.
Thompson said those affected by the accident would receive trauma counselling.
Seven people have died and 40 have been injured on KwaZulu-Natal roads since Friday in five separate accidents. Four of them involved taxis.
An elderly man died and 16 people were injured after the taxi they had been travelling overturned on the M25 near Inanda yesterday.
Netcare911 spokesman, Chris Botha, said the driver lost control of the vehicle, causing it to roll several times.
In a crash in Newlands East, seven passengers were injured after the taxi they had been travelling in collided with another vehicle.
On Saturday, five people died and 13 were injured when the taxi they had been travelling in crashed on the M4.
Botha said the driver reportedly lost control of his vehicle, which veered off the road and slammed into the barriers before coming to a stop on its roof.
Kwanele Ncalane,, spokesman for the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Transport, said 25 people had died in road accidents in the weekend before .
“This seems to be ongoing. It’s a painful experience that this province is going through, especially as we have just come off from a festive season where we lost more than 220 people because of the road carnage.”
Ncalane said that in every accident there was a driver who was at fault, and the increasing number of accidents meant that the level of flawed driving on KZN roads was very high.