A motorist seen speeding towards oncoming traffic and overtaking 10 cars in East London while hurling insults at other road users is one of many incidents captured on video depicting just why the Eastern Cape’s roads remain among the most dangerous in SA.
Speeding, drunk, reckless and thoughtless drivers have left a trail of death and despair, especially over the Christmas season.
Transport minister Fikile Mbalula in his road safety report on Thursday, said the province had recorded the third highest number of road fatalities over the festive season.
KwaZulu-Natal recorded the most deaths with 354, Gauteng had the second highest with 254, while there were 242 deaths in the Eastern Cape.
The 2019-20 festive season statistics show a nation wide total of 1,390 fatalities recorded, slightly down from 1,438 in 2018-19.
The road users who died during the festive season were pedestrians (40%), passengers (34%), drivers (25%) and cyclists (1%), Mbalula said.
Irate Eastern Cape social media users have in the past few weeks posted pictures and videos of unruly road users, with some complaining that reckless driving posed a danger to the lives of children and other citizens.
On Monday, a nine-year old girl from Nonceba Primary School was struck by a car on the N2 at Qora village; the pupil died at the scene.
Meanwhile, an East London family is still reeling after their 19-year-old son, former Stirling High School pupil, Kaycee de Cruz, was killed by a speeding motorist during the festive season.
His mother Natasha Holloway told the Dispatch this week that she was struggling to come to terms with “losing my only child”. De Cruz was on his way home from the Gonubie Sports Club when the incident happened.
An emotional Holloway said: “There’s enough light on that road to see that there are people there. I want justice; there’s a lot of people who want justice for him.”
Her son was “full of life” and had big plans, she said.
“He was going to attend ETA College and do a sport psychology course and travel overseas. He had his life planned out but was unfortunately at the wrong place at the wrong time.
She said: “It’s very sad as he was a good boy with dreams and because of an individual who was drunk and decided to get behind a wheel, I will never see my boy again. I am still getting used to the fact that he is not there any more. It was an old man who did this.”
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