— CapeTalk on 567AM (@CapeTalk) April 3, 2018
Ten people lost their lives on Western Cape roads this weekend – less than half the death toll of last year’s Easter weekend.
Western Cape Traffic Chief Kenny Africa said early reports indicated that six pedestrians and four others were killed over the long weekend, although that number could rise as unreported accidents come to light.
The total so far is significantly down from last year’s reported 22 road deaths over the Easter weekend.
Africa attributed the drop in fatalities partly to the 64 drunken drivers who were arrested in road blocks across the province. One drunk driver in George tested seven times over the legal blood alcohol limit.
“If those people would’ve been on the road and not arrested, I think our fatality figure would’ve been much higher,” Africa said in an interview on Cape Talk radio.
A further 721 speeding drivers were caught in camera traps over the long weekend, and nearly R1-million fines handed out. One significant win was that there were no taxi-related accidents.
“We had a no-nonsense approach with regards to drinking and driving, people doing excessively high speeds on our roads, and fatigue,” Africa said. “We still experience bad behaviour of some of our motorists. Until such time as we can change that, we will be having problems on our roads.”
The long weekend over Easter always brings extremely heavy road traffic as families head out of Cape Town on holiday.
The busiest routes are the N2 over Sir Lowry’s Pass, the N1 through the Huguenot Tunnel towards Worcestor, and the R27 up the West Coast.
Over the course of the weekend, a whopping 111 800 vehicles passed through the Huguenot Tunnel, according to Africa.
It was bumper to bumper traffic over Sir Lowry’s Pass too, with 2440 vehicles per hour flooding back into Cape Town during the busiest hours of Monday night.
The tragic fatalities this year included a hit and run just outside Mossel Bay, in which a motorist killed a 24-year-old woman and 29-year-old man.
“This guy drove off, he didn’t even stop,” Africa said.
On the Houw Hoek pass, the driver of a Toyota Avanza lost control of his vehicle and rolled down the mountainside, killing a 68-year-old woman and a toddler.