Bloemfontein - Eleven people died and about eight others were seriously injured in a horrific crash on the N3 between Villiers and the Wilge Toll Plaza in the Free State on Sunday afternoon, paramedics and police said.
Reports from the scene indicated that a minibus taxi, two cars, and a heavy truck were involved in a collision, Netcare 911 spokesman Shawn Herbst said.
"Tragically eleven people had sustained fatal injuries, and approximately another eight people sustained serious injuries. One of the patients was airlifted to hospital in a critical condition," he said.
Earlier, Free State police spokeswoman Colonel Thandi Mbambo said a case of culpable homicide had been opened for further investigation after the crash, which happened at about 3.30pm. A truck driving on the N3 towards Warden collided head-on with a Toyota Quantum minibus taxi driving in the opposite direction towards Villiers, about 10km from Villiers, she said.
Eleven passengers in the taxi died at the scene and five others were airlifted to Alberton and Mafube hospitals. The exact cause of the accident would be investigated, she said.
Mbambo said that a short while earlier, at about 2pm, a white BMW driving towards Bloemfontein collided with a silver VW Polo heading in the opposite direction on the ZR Mahabane Road near Brandfort.
One passenger from the Polo died at the scene, three others were transported to hospitals in Bloemfontein, and another person was treated at the scene. The driver of the BMW, who was alone in the car, was not injured, she said.
African News Agency/ANA