Ten people were killed and scores injured when the Eldo Coaches bus they were travelling in from Durban to Johannesburg rolled on the N3 near the Tugela River today. Picture: KZN EMS
Ten people were killed and scores injured when the Eldo Coaches bus they were travelling in from Durban to Johannesburg rolled on the N3 near the Tugela River today. Picture: KZN EMS

Woman shattered after her mom dies in N3 bus crash

By Nomonde Zondi Time of article published Oct 14, 2021

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DURBAN - A WOMAN whose mother was among the victims of a horror bus crash on the N3 on Tuesday says she is shattered by her death.

Ten people died and scores were injured in the crash on the N3 near Tugela Bridge. Bus company Eldos Coaches said in a statement on Tuesday that the driver allegedly lost control of the vehicle after a blow-out of a front tyre.

The coach had left Durban Station at about 6.45am and was travelling to Johannesburg when the crash occurred.

Speaking to The Mercury from Botswana yesterday, Kagelelo Mokalake said her mother, Dipuo Mokalake, 54, had been travelling to Johannesburg where she was going to catch another bus to Botswana.

She said she could not describe the pain she was feeling as they had been eagerly waiting her mother’s return home.

She said her mother had been living in Durban for the past three years and had a salon. She said she would send them money.

“I last spoke to my mom when she was about to get on the bus,” she said.

She said she hoped the bus company would contact the families as they wanted to know what happened.

Mokalake said she got the heartbreaking news of her mother’s death in a phone call from Ladysmith Hospital.

“I last saw my mother in May this year and we were looking forward to seeing her,” she said.

Minister of Transport Fikile Mbalula sent condolences to the families who had lost their loved ones and expressed shock over the accident.

“Many people depend on public transport to travel long distances across the country and this accident has heightened their anxiety, especially since the festive season is approaching,” he said.

He said the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) would be conducting a thorough investigation on the cause of the crash.

KZN police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said culpable homicide charges had been opened.

Eldo Coaches said in a statement yesterday that it had dispatched three teams of senior managers and personnel to the scene of the accident to assist passengers and their families, as well as to assist the local authorities that are investigating the accident.

“We offer our sincere condolences to the bereaved families. We are dedicated to assisting the affected families as far as possible and to easing their burden in any way we can. Several injured passengers were taken by emergency services to various hospitals in the area and are being treated.”

The company said it was also assisting all passengers to be reunited with their families once they were treated for any injuries sustained and discharged from hospitals.

“The accident is still under investigation and we are unable to provide any further information with regards to the incident.

“We can, however, state that there was a front-wheel tyre blow-out preceding the accident.

“We are fully co-operating with all the relevant authorities, including the RTMC and officials from the Department of Transport, to ensure that the incident is investigated thoroughly.”

THE MERCURY

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