Four burnt to death in horrific road accident

AFTERMATH: Four people died in an accident near Matsulu junction on Friday. Pic: ANDREW HLONGWANE. 14/08/2009. © Sowetan.
AFTERMATH: Four people died in an accident near Matsulu junction on Friday. Pic: ANDREW HLONGWANE. 14/08/2009. © Sowetan.

FOUR people died and scores were injured in a collision involving four vehicles that caught fire in the notorious Crocodile Valley on the N4-highway near Matsulu junction.

FOUR people died and scores were injured in a collision involving four vehicles that caught fire in the notorious Crocodile Valley on the N4-highway near Matsulu junction.

A truck collided with a Toyota Prado and then veered off to collide with a police van and a post office minibus on Friday afternoon.

The Prado had apparently indicated that it was turning left to Matsulu but suddenly did a u-turn that resulted in the truck hitting it from behind and dragging it for about 50m.

The truck tried to stop quickly, making it swerve across the road and in the process colliding with the minibus and a police van from the Kaapmuiden police station.

The truck caught fire, which engulfed the Prado and burnt its four occupants beyond recognition.

Mpumalanga police spokesperson Superintendent Malcolm Mokomeni said yesterday: "We still have to establish where the the families of the victims are.

"But after circulating descriptions of their vehicle we established it was from Carolina."

Two police officers and a number of other people were taken to the Rob Ferreira Hospital in Nelspruit.

Witnesses complained about the late arrival of the fire brigade, saying they arrived an hour after the accident.

Sowetan has since established that the KaNyamazane fire brigade, which was hardly 10km from the accident scene, had experienced a technical problem and the Nelspruit fire station had to attend the scene.

Witnesses watched helplessly as the four occupants, believed to be two men and two women, burnt in the Prado in which they had been trapped.

The truck was transporting chrome from South Africa to Mozambique.

Police had to close down the road for few hours so that the wrecks could be cleared away.

Over the years many accidents have happened at Matsulu junction and people have suggested that, to prevent more accidents, traffic lights should be installed.

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