Home South Africa News Fikile Mbalula concerned as pedestrians account for 35% of Easter road deaths

Fikile Mbalula concerned as pedestrians account for 35% of Easter road deaths

Fikile Mbalula

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula has raised concerns over the increase in the number of pedestrians who continue to lose their lives on the country’s roads.

Two hundred and thirty-five people were killed over the Easter long weekend and pedestrians accounted for 35% of the fatalities.

Mbalula released the 2021 Easter road traffic statistics on Thursday.

Most of the 189 road crashes that were recorded in the country occurred in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng, and Limpopo.

Due to the hard lockdown restrictions last year because to the COVID-19 pandemic, traffic officials have compared the 2021 Easter road fatalities statistics with the 2019 figures.

While there’s been a decline of 9.6% in road fatalities, Mbalula said more pedestrians had been killed on the country’s roads.

“At least 35% of people who died on the roads are pedestrians.”

He has attributed the deaths to a number of factors.

“Such as drinking and walking – including jaywalking, and failure to wear visible clothing at night.”

It’s understood most of the pedestrian fatal crashes occurred between midnight and 2 am when people were moving around in violation of the lockdown curfew.

The minister said his department had embarked on efforts to tighten the country’s laws to ensure harsher penalties were imposed on motorists who continue to undermine road regulations.

Mbalula said South Africa would not win the fight against reducing the number of the road fatalities if tougher laws were not imposed.

“Up until you know that if you’re drunk and you’re found by the traffic officers, it’s not just a fine, we will continue to see this carnage.”

Mbalula has given those who continue to undermine the law a stern warning.

“To those who are still refusing to comply, your days are numbered. It is just a matter of time before we catch you and remove you from our roads.”

Four hundred and thirty-eight motorists were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol and over 32,000 traffic fines were issued.


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