All systems go for N3 tolls ahead of Easter holiday travel
DURBAN - WITH hundreds of holidaymakers expected to hit the road ahead of the Easter weekend, the N3 Toll Concession (N3TC) has confirmed that it is geared up for busy traffic conditions.
The N3TC manages the N3 highway between Cedara in KwaZulu-Natal and Heidelberg in Gauteng.
Dhoogra said medical services with intermediate and/or advanced life support units will be stationed at strategic points along the Route, whilst air ambulances will be on standby at their bases near the N3.
"Volunteers from various humanitarian groups will be available to assist at major crash scenes and provide post-crash care and support. N3TC’s incident management services will also base a dedicated scene safety vehicle at the top of Van Reenen’s Pass for the duration of the Easter weekend," she said.
This year, an additional layer of risk, in the form of Covid-19 exposure, is added to the various challenges travellers and support personnel already face over peak traffic periods.
"We appeal to all road users to remain vigilant whilst on holiday and not to relax their awareness. Please continue to carefully follow all healthcare advisories and protocols to keep yourself, you loved ones and those you interact with safe," Dhoogra added.
She said careful planning, patience and awareness, a positive mindset and defensive driving techniques all help to reduce road incidents and trauma
Better informed road users have easier travel experiences as they can take preventative measures to navigate or avoid stressful situations such as poor weather conditions, unexpected road closures, major crashes, congestion and delays. Obtain advance and real-time travel information for the N3 Toll Route by contacting N3TC’s 24-hour helpline on 0800 63 43 57 or by following @N3Route on Twitter.
Road crashes cause tremendous physical, emotional and financial trauma which could be avoided by being alert and driving defensively. Human error and high-risk behaviour – including driver distraction and negligence, fatigue, excessive speeding, driving under the influence (of alcohol, drugs or medication) and not wearing a seat belt – remain some of the leading causes of carnage on the N3 Toll Route.
"It is the responsibility of every driver to adjust their actions in order to minimise the consequences of human error," she said.
Motorists are urged to pay attention to traffic obstructions along the route.
"Although the N3 Toll Route is currently being rehabilitated and upgraded to improve its road infrastructure along various sections of the route, construction teams have pulled out all stops to ensure that at least two traffic lanes will be available to in each direction accommodate traffic during the Easter weekend. However, road users should always remain alert and adhere to warning signs and signposted speed limits. Some construction areas may continue to be barricaded for safety purposes. Where required, only emergency remedial work will be performed during this long weekend," Dhoogra said.
She added that all toll plazas will operate at maximum capacity, but congestion may be experienced at the height of peak periods, especially in a towards Gauteng on Monday, April 5.
Should it be required, Dhoogra said the Roads Traffic Inspectorate may implement special measures to manage traffic flow in order to ease congestion and to improve general safety along the route.
For increased mobility and safety, electronic tags are highly recommended and accepted in all lanes at N3TC toll plazas. Alternative accepted payment methods include credit cards, fleet cards, cash or petrol/garage cards. No payments with debit cards can be processed at any of the toll plazas in South Africa.
High peak flows of 2500 vehicles per hour towards KwaZulu-Natal are expected on Thursday and Friday. At least 3 500 vehicles per hour towards Gauteng on Monday. If possible, road users are advised to plan travel times outside of high peak periods.