News / South Africa

Ilse de Lange
2 minute read
25 Jan 2017
5:51 am

Mpumalanga man to sue transport MEC over motorbike crash

Ilse de Lange

Hendrik Grundlingh, who sustained serious injuries when his bike hit a pothole, is set to lodge a R613 000 damages claim against the MEC.

Photo: Supplied

A Lydenburg electrician who sustained serious injuries when his motorcycle hit a pothole on a Mpumalanga road four years ago can proceed with his R613 000 damages claim against the Mpumalanga transport MEC.

The North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria granted an order, condoning Hendrik Grundlingh’s failure to give notice of his claim within the legally prescribed period.

Grundlingh, 43, lost control of his motorcycle and fell when he hit potholes while driving between Sabie and Hazyview in August 2012.

He injured his right ankle and foot, suffered various cuts and abrasions and suffered an open wound on his right calf that required stitching.

He is claiming damages not only for his past and future medical costs but also for his emotional shock and trauma, pain and discomfort, disability and loss of income.

He alleged in court papers the accident had been caused by the sole negligence of the transport department’s employees, who failed to ensure that the tarred
surface of the road was smooth and safe, failed to properly maintain the road and failed to adequately warn the public of the fact that the area in which the accident occurred regularly had potholes, or that the road could be in a deteriorated condition.

The MEC said Grundlingh’s claim had lapsed and said the department could not be expected to have been aware of the existence of all potholes on roads under its
jurisdiction.

The MEC pleaded that the roads under its jurisdiction had been maintained, managed and controlled in accordance with reasonable standards, having regard to the province’s financial and other resources and constraints.

The department said Grundlingh had been negligent by driving too fast and failing to take cognisance of the general condition of the road.

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