Taxi crash claims its 11th victim

THE death toll in the Eastern Cape minibus taxi accident has risen to 11, the provincial health department has said.

The latest victim, a woman, had been among the critically injured receiving treatment at the Nelson Mandela Academic Hospital, spokesperson Sizwe Kupelo said yesterday.

Four other patients among the eight people injured in Saturday's accident were being treated at the St Barnabas Hospital in Libode.

Another person was to be transferred to the Bedford Hospital for specialist treatment later yesterday. A toddler injured in the accident was expected to be discharged.

The minibus they were in drove off a cliff at the Tudor Ndamase Pass between Libode and Port St Johns.

A helicopter had to be called in to retrieve the bodies as it was difficult to get to them by foot, Kupelo said.

It was the second accident on that stretch of road in a week. A prayer service was planned for Thursday at 11am.

Provincial transport department spokesperson Ncedo Kumbaca said it would decide whether to charge the taxi driver, who was among the injured, once investigations were completed. - Sapa