Horror bakkie crash at Zinkwazi leaves four dead, nine injured
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Durban - FOUR people were killed and nine were left critically injured after two bakkies crashed into each other on the N2 just past Zinkwazi on Monday morning.
According to the Department of Transport, preliminary reports revealed that a tyre burst, which caused the driver of a Nissan bakkie to lose control of the vehicle. The bakkie then veered off the road and into on-coming traffic where it crashed into another Nissan bakkie killing four people.
Road Traffic Inspectorate officers were unable to identify the gender of the deceased.
The N2 northbound was closed to traffic for two hours and vehicles were diverted to the southbound slow lane. The N2 northbound lane was opened by 12pm.
Police spokesperson Captain Nqobile Gwala said the crash occurred before 7am yesterday and that two men and two women aged between 30 and 35 died at the scene. The injured were taken to hospital.
She also said KwaDukuza police were investigating a case of culpable homicide and the circumstances around the crash.
IPSS Medical Rescue spokesperson Paul Herbst said both bakkies had been transporting multiple people when they crashed into each other on the N2 northbound lane.
He said all patients were stabilised before being taken to various hospitals.
Meanwhile, Transport, Community Safety and Liaison MEC Bheki Ntuli ordered an investigation into the crash.
“While preliminary investigations revealed that a burst tyre caused the driver to lose control of the vehicle, forensic experts have been dispatched to investigate other factors that could have caused this fatal crash. We urge motorists to be extra cautious when travelling on our roads as we are currently experiencing rains in some parts of the province. Most critically, motorists must ensure that vehicles are roadworthy by checking that their brakes, tyres and wipers are in good working condition,” said Ntuli.
He said they were very concerned about the rising number of road fatalities. They needed to implement innovative interventions to reduce the carnage.
He also urged motorists and people to take collective responsibility in ensuring the safety of all road users because one death was one too many.
Meanwhile, on Facebook there was a consensus that the N2 stretch near Zinkwazi was a hot spot for road crashes.
Lisette Angelique Abell referred to the Zinkwazi section as a “death trap” and said three of her colleagues had died in a crash at the same site last year.
Sandile Delwa said the N2 at Zinkwazi was becoming a problem and something needed to be done as soon as possible, especially with the festive season coming up with its traditional increased traffic volumes.
Kylie Cruickshank said both the old and new roads between Mandeni and Zinkwazi were dangerous while Luellen Smith said there needed to be stricter rules on transporting people in bakkies.
Justice Project SA chairperson Howard Dembovsky said erecting steel wire barriers along no-crossing lines where head-ons regularly occurred had proven to be an excellent solution to preventing such collisions.
“Such barriers can stop extra heavy trucks from crossing. Why anyone would think that they would not stop bakkies and cars is beyond me. Then again, there are some people who still think that painting two solid white lines with a solid yellow line between them will do the trick,” said Dembovsky.