Photo: Netcare 911/Supplied.

PRETORIA - The N1 has partially been reopened following to an earlier crash that claimed seven lives, authorities said on Friday evening.

Earlier, the highway was closed in both directions between Pumulani Plaza and Wallmansthal following the crash, which involved 11 cars.

Netcare 911 spokesperson Shawn Herbst said paramedics responded to reports of a collision on the N1 North after the Pumlani Tollgate in Kameeldrift at around 11.15am.

"Reports from the scene indicate that two trucks and approximately eight cars were involved in a collision allegedly due to a roadside veld fire that covered the freeway in a blanket of thick smoke.

"The vehicles subsequently caught alight and the fire was doused by the Fire and Rescue Services.

"On closer inspection most of the people escaped with little to no injuries however two, possibly three people did not escape and sadly died on the scene."

Tshwane metro police spokesperson Isaac Mahamba corroborated this, placing the number of deceased at two. 

"Two fatalities can be confirmed at the moment and the possibility of more cannot be ruled out," he said.

By Friday evening, authorities confirmed that the N1 Southbound had been reopened between Petroport and Wallmansthal. The N1 Northbound remains closed.

#BakwenaN1N4 #Crash update N1 SOUTH btwn Petroport & Wallmansthal has been re-opened. N1 NORTH REMAINS CLOSED. Plse make use of alt routes or delay travel. We will keep our followers updated @ewnupdates @jaca_traffic @motswedingfm @CapricornFM

— Bakwena Platinum (@BakwenaN1N4) September 27, 2019

Mahamba said law enforcement and emergency services' personnel were still on scene on Friday evening. 

TMPD officers were monitoring the closures.

African News Agency (ANA)