Cape Town - As authorities continue to fight for the safety of scholar transport, one driver was arrested for drunk-driving and his vehicle was found to be unroadworthy.
The man was arrested by officers while they were patrolling an area of Mitchells Plain yesterday morning.
The drunk driver’s arrest took place as the Western Cape provincial traffic officers and the Provincial Regulatory Entity alongside city officials were busy conducting scholar transport enforcement operations in the area.
The operations took place in Rocklands and Tafelsig, where operating licences were checked, and vehicle and driver fitness tests conducted.
Western Cape MEC for Mobility, Ricardo Mackenzie, said that the roadblocks were part of their ongoing operation to check on the safety of scholar transport.
“Our aim is to make it safe for children to get to school. This is why we have operations like this,” he said.
According to Mackenzie, authorities are on a mission to prevent fatal incidents involving schoolchildren.
In May last year, five schoolchildren were killed instantly and a sixth died later in an accident on AZ Berman Drive.
The driver of a Toyota Hilux lost control of his vehicle, causing the canopy to shatter. The children’s bodies were scattered on the road.
“We are trying to prevent incidents and crashes like what happened last year with the horrible accident in Mitchells Plain.
“We are looking at all areas where there is a large amount of scholar transport,” Mackenzie said.
During the operation in the vicinity of two schools in the Mitchells Plain area, officers impounded at least 19 vehicles.
Scholars were removed from overloaded vehicles while guilty drivers were assisted with their professional driving permit issues.
The alleged drunk driver was detained at Mitchells Plain SAPS for transporting 23 learners between the ages of 10 and 15 while under the influence.
Mayco member for safety and security JP Smith has further urged parents not to make use of unsafe scholar transport.
“Don’t put your children in a vehicle that is overloaded, because it is likely that they are taking other chances.
“They might be unlicensed drivers or have unroadworthy vehicles. It’s simply not worth your child’s safety,” he said.