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By Citizen Reporter

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Nearly 19 000 traffic officers deployed on roads for Easter

Durban is ready to welcome an expected 360 000 visitors to the city over the Easter weekend.


A deployment of 18 819 traffic officers on South Africa’s roads over the long Easter weekend aims to ensure the safety of road users as the transport department said it anticipated an increase of traffic on the main routes from Gauteng, with pilgrims and holiday makers travelling around the country, SAnews.gov.za reports.

The Berea Mail further reports that Durban was ready to welcome an expected 360 000 visitors to the city over the extended Easter weekend and that the city expected to generate R870 million in direct spend and inject an estimated R1.5 billion into the city’s economy.

Mayor Zandile Gumede said 3 100 jobs were expected to be created and sustained as a result.

“Our hotel occupancy rate is sitting at an average of 70%. We are confident that these numbers will grow as we move closer to the Easter period,” said Gumede.

“The hospitality and tourism sector play a big role in injecting billions into the economy of the city. There are also a number of new tourism products on offer in the city over the Easter period this year. This includes the Station Road precinct and a number of new restaurants in and around a number of townships and along the beachfront promenade,” she said.

SAnews.gov.za reports that the department further appealed to road users to remain vigilant when travelling on the road and that it would ensure law enforcement operations were highly visible and there was road safety awareness on the roads.

SAnews.gov.za further said the Road Traffic Management Corporation set a target for road accidents and fatalities to be reduced by 50% over the long weekend.

Some municipalities have added their voices to encourage motorists to stay safe on the road over the long weekend.

Ekurhuleni:

In a statement issued by the spokesperson of the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality, Themba Gadebe, Ekurhuleni mayor Mzwandile Masina was quoted as saying, “If you want to relax and enjoy yourself, do that at home. We want sober drivers on our roads because the safety of our people is dependent on your sobriety.”

Masina further said fatal crashes were caused by fatigue, drunken and reckless driving. He promised Ekurhuleni residents there would be increased police visibility.

Johannesburg: 

The City of Joburg on Twitter shared a number of other safety and educational tips for residents to regard over the Easter weekend:

Cape Town:

The City of Cape Town said in a statement: “From an enforcement perspective, the City’s Traffic Service, Metro Police and Law Enforcement Departments will implement the festive season safety blueprint which includes visible policing, ad hoc vehicle checkpoints, and roadblocks in association with the South African Police Service and Provincial Traffic Service.”

The city further offered free vehicle checks for motorists last week.

Road trip checklist:

In a statement, the marketing manager for Budget Insurance, Susan Steward, provided two “vital rules” that should be followed for road users to reach their destinations safely. These are firstly checking that the vehicle is in a roadworthy condition, and secondly, remaining alert throughout the journey.

The road trip checklist should include checking: lights; windows and wipers; wheels and tyres; brakes; suspension; battery; belts and chains; cooling system; filters and fluids; exhaust system; body panels, mountings and accessories; safety or warning equipment; and insurance.

Steward added: “Keep your energy levels up and take a break every two hours or so to remain alert. Decreasing your stress before a long journey can also prevent accidents.

“Part of this is planning your trip as well as the route you will take. Knowing how to get there will make for a more relaxed ride.”

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