The Western Cape has seen an alarming increase in road fatalities over the festive season thus far, this year’s 133 road related deaths already well over 2014’s toll of 120 for the entire December period.
1600 people have also reportedly been arrested for drunk driving in the province over the same period, 58 of which have come over the past weekend. These include the arrest of a driver who posted an alcohol reading nearly eight times over the legal limit.
The Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) has previously warned motorists that there will be severe a clampdown on drivers who failed to obey the rules of the road, with those in violation of minor offences still facing the possibility of arrest.
“We started taking these measures last week throughout the country. These include arresting people for overtaking at places where it is not safe to do so, endangering people other people’s lives. We had a couple of these arrests over the weekend for reckless and negligent driving,” Provincial Traffic Chief, Kenny Africa explained.
Africa assured that authorities would maintain their “no nonsense approach” to traffic related offenses, especially if it proved the only sure-fire way to ensure negligent drivers were kept off the roads.
The clampdown agreed by the RTMC is expected to be a year-round operation aimed at ensuring the general safety of motorists on roads throughout the country.
“133 fatalities over 28 days is hopelessly too many people who died on our roads, and definitely 133 too many,” he declared.
With holiday makers expected to return home shortly after New Year’s, Africa advised all long distance travellers to adhere to the golden rule of stopping every two hours or 200km, as well as making sure they were well rested before embarking on the next leg of their journey. VOC (Mubeen Banderker)