Cape Town - Eleven children injured when a car drove into them while they were walking have parents worried about similar incidents endangering their children who are about to start the new school year.
Provincial Emergency Medical Services (EMS) said they responded to an incident which involved 11 children.
“The call for assistance came through at 12.47 and the incident occurred at 25 Corntail Street, Electric City, Eerste River. The call was reported to the call taker as a light motor vehicle which drove into minors.
“Four EMS vehicles were dispatched and two males and one female who sustained minor injuries were transported to Eerste River Hospital, two females and one male who sustained minor injuries were transported to Delft CHC and five males who sustained minor injuries as well were transported to Kleinvlei CHC.”
This followed a similar incident in The Hague, Delft, when a 7-year-old girl sustained a serious head injury after being hit by a taxi while walking on the pavement.
Community leader and grandfather of the injured girl, George Haricombe, said that the accident was devastating for the family.
He also complained that the police had been slow in attending to the case.
“My granddaughter was innocent; something like this should never have happened to her nor should it happen to anyone else. She was walking on the sidewalk when the taxi, impatient to wait for its turn, drove on to the pavement knocking her over. The worst part is that driver left her there not even bothering to try to assist,” he said.
“Accidents such as these have become so frequent in our community. You never know when someone will be hit by a vehicle and left to die. The lack of community development has bred this problem.
“People are not united or empowered. There are no community safety initiatives directed at ending these incidents.
“I wonder then what will happen to the children here who are being knocked over one by one. In a few weeks or days, we might hear that yet another young person was involved in a hit and run, especially now that children are set to go back to school this week,” Haricombe said.
Delft councillor Michelle Adonis said that she was working on instituting programmes to create safer roads for residents especially vulnerable people and children.
She said: “I am currently in talks with the Traffic Department to see if we can urgently initiate traffic calming interventions. I understand that road safety is important, and as soon as I get the go-ahead I will set up meetings, assessments of the roads in this area so that we can properly plan to eradicate these issues.
“As a councillor, unfortunately, I cannot put plans into motion without following due process. I also need to meet up with the department to discuss a budget for the road safety initiatives for this community because it’s not just one thing, there are also the education and awareness campaigns parts that need to be structured and rolled out. I am working on it,” said Adonis.