Tyre blow-out sends bakkie head-on into taxi

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

Thirteen people died in two separate accidents in KwaZulu-Natal at the weekend.

The deaths bring the death toll on the province's roads to 60 in the past two months.

In a horrific pile-up at Southbroom, on the KwaZulu-Natal south coast on Saturday, two bakkies collided sending one of them head-on into a taxi full of passengers coming from a church service.

Police spokesman Superintendent Zandra Hechter said investigations indicated the driver of a north-bound bakkie lost control when atyre burst.

The vehicle veered across the road and hit another bakkie before colliding with an oncoming minibus. She said eight people died on the scene, with one dying at Port Shepstone Hospital.

"Six passengers in the bakkie died and two in the taxi lost their lives. The ninth victim died later. It was a most horrific accident.

"This was the third accident to happen in Southbroom within two months. Though the circumstances surrounding the incidents are different, one is worried," said Hechter.

Colin Govender, spokesman for the Department of Transport, said there were eight people in a bakkie and at least 13 in the taxi.

"It is such a horrible experience when we lose so many people on our roads, despite all the mechanisms we have put in place to curb road deaths."

In a separate incident, three people died in Pietermaritzburg when a taxi overturned, killing two passengers and the driver.

In another accident, a man was killed when he lost control of the motorcycle he was riding.

The man, who is believed to have been a jockey, was travelling on Link Road heading towards Waterfall when he skidded and landed beneath the wheels of another vehicle coming from the opposite direction. The biker, who was wedged under the car, suffered severe trauma.

Last month, 10 people were killed in road accidents in Ladysmith and Dannhauser and 90 people injured.

In another incident, six people died when a bus from KwaZulu-Natal Bus Services collided with a firefighters' vehicle in Port Shepstone.

Barely 24 hours later, seven people were killed when a bus from the same company burst a tyre.