'Economic link to carnage'

More than 13000 people die every year on South Africa's roads, costing the economy in the region of R43billion,Transport Minister Jeff Radebe, right, said yesterday.

More than 13000 people die every year on South Africa's roads, costing the economy in the region of R43billion,Transport Minister Jeff Radebe, right, said yesterday.

He said economic growth contributed to the increase of accidents because the number of vehicles on the road was increasing.

"More South Africans are able to buy vehicles. Just last year alone, more than 600000 vehicles were bought, which translated to a drastic increase in our vehicle population and more drivers on our roads," said Radebe.

"These factors mean that a great number of drivers are entering our roads on a daily basis, leading to a steady increase in road accidents."

He said his department had intensified its Arrive Alive campaign with the deployment of 8000 traffic officials and 193 patrol vehicles on hazardous routes countrywide.

Radebe was speaking at the closing ceremony of the 16 Days of Activism Against Women and Children campaign held at Danie Kuis Stadium in Upington.

He received a Torch of Peace from Northern Cape premier Dipuo Peters.

Peters said the campaign must be used as an organising strategy to eliminate all forms of violence and abuse against women by raising awareness. - Sapa

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