Sipho Mabena

By Sipho Mabena

Premium Journalist

11 killed in Mpumalanga horror accidents  

The impact was so powerful that flying debris struck and injured pedestrians and damaged a stationery vehicle.

Eleven people, including three children, have been killed and three others injured in just two horrific road accidents on Mpumalanga roads, on Sunday.

In the first accident, five people were killed instantly when the Volkswagen Citi Golf hatchback vehicle they were driving overturned on the notorious R544 Road between Emalahleni and Verena.

ALSO READ: One dead, child critically injured as truck and three cars involved in accident

According to Moeti Mmusi, provincial Community Safety, Security and Liaison spokesperson, the vehicle overturned and rolled several times, with the driver and passengers ejected from the vehicle in the process.

One person sustained serious injuries and receiving treatment at KwaMhlanga Hospital.

Notorious road

The road is infamous for horrific accidents that have claimed countless lives, including that of eMalahleni Mayor Linah Malatjie.

ALSO READ: eMalahleni mayor just the latest victim of notorious pothole-riddled road

The mayor and her husband Esau Malatjie were travelling on the road between Gemsbokspruit and Verena when their SUV collided with a double cab bakkie on the evening of around 21:30 in January.

The lone occupant of a second vehicle was also killed in the horrific crash on the road prone to head-on collisions, particularly at night.

In the second accident, six people were killed in a swipe collision involving an articulated truck and a Mercedez Benz sedan on the N4 highway towards Mbombela, near Montrose, on Sunday afternoon.

Mmusi said the deceased include three adults and three children, all occupants of the sedan, died at the scene on impact.

Flying debris

One critically injured driver of the sedan was airlifted to the nearby hospital in Mbombela, he said.

The impact was so powerful that three pedestrians were slightly injured when they were struck by debris flying from the crash, also damaging Toyota Tazz hatchback stationery by the roadside.

Eleven killed in Mpumalanga horror accidents  
Photo: Emer-G-Med

ALSO READ: Four dead in massive crash near Mariannhill Toll

“The cause of the collision has not yet been established but the investigation is already underway.

“This is the second major crash today with one having occurred on R544 Road between Verena and Emalahleni that claimed the lives of five people.  Motorists are therefore advised to be cautious to avoid further loss of lives on the road,” Mmusi added.

Deadly trend

The crash comes a week after four people were killed when their vehicle was dragged underneath a trailer of a truck in a horrific accident that left 10 people injured and involved several vehicles near the Mariannhill Toll Plaza.

Dashboard camera footage shows how the truck failed to stop before crashing into several vehicles while in the fast lane, with the Road Traffic Management Corporation saying the crash was allegedly due to brake failure. 

The carnage and destruction wreaked by trucks on SA’s roads has been squarely blamed on the rapidly crumbling rail infrastructure, which has sparked a hike in road freight payload and ultimately more trucks on the roads.

NOW READ: How collapse of SA’s rail system unleashed deadly trucks on our roads

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