road crashes claim 62 lives

Sne Masuku, Alex Matlala and Sapa

At least 62 people died on South African roads between Friday and yesterday in what has been described as the bloodiest road carnage weekend this year.

In KwaZulu-Natal 31 people lost their lives while Limpopo accounted for the second highest figure of 17.

In Transkei eight soccer players returning from a soccer game in Tsolo died after a taxi they were travelling in collided with a bakkie on Sunday.

The accident happened near Madzikane-ka-Zuli Memorial Hospital at Mount Frere in the Eastern Cape.

KwaZulu Natal woke up to horrific crashes in separate accidents.

Ten people died in Inchanga near the Shongweni off-ramp, 14 others were killed in Nyanyadu near Dundee and three in Matubatuba.

In two of the accidents, a 10 year-old child and a four-year-old were killed and at least 13 others sustained serious injuries.

A horrific head-on collision between a minibus taxi and a truck between Dundee and Osizweni at P272 on Nyanyadu road left 12 passenger dead while five others were critically injured.

Jaws of life had to be used to remove passengers trapped in the minibus taxi.

In another accident, 10 people were killed and four others are in a critical condition in hospital after an accident involving two cars and a bakkie at Shongweni, near Marianhill toll plaza.

Transport department spokesman Nonkululeko Mbatha said the driver of a bakkie travelling from Durban to Pietermaritzburg allegedly lost control and swerved to the opposite direction and collided with two on-coming vehicles, one of them a VW.

In another accident in Mtubatuba on the north of the province, two teachers and a 10-year-old pupil at Mtikini primary school in Ingwavuma were killed instantly when the driver of a Ford Ikon they were travelling in lost control and overturned near Zamimpilo market.

The vehicle was reportedly carrying six teachers and pupils at the time of the accident.

In Limpopo seven people died when a bakkie collided with a sedan near the Ranch Hotel just outside Polokwane on Sunday.

"The driver of the bakkie apparently lost control and veered off the road and rammed into the Tazz killing six of the occupants instantly," said police spokesman, Senior Superintendent Ronnel Otto.

She said the driver of the bakkie died as he was being rushed to a hospital in Polokwane. He sustained serious head and body injuries.

Another four people died on Friday afternoon when a BMW X5 crashed head on with Nissan Micra between Sekgakgapeng and Mokopane.

Police said the driver of the BMW was driving under the influence of alcohol.