The South African National Roads Agency (Sanral) said the N3 accident that claimed 16 lives between Peter Brown and Chatterton off-ramps in Pietermaritzburg on Saturday was not caused by “poor signage or traffic accommodation”.
A statement issued by Sanral on Monday said they held an emergency meeting on Sunday to ascertain whether or not traffic accommodation- being traffic signs, lighting and concrete barriers- was the cause of the accident.
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Sanral’s eastern regional manager, Dumisani Nkabinde, said the accident was a secondary accident. The first accident involved a truck and its cause could be anything from human error or speed, but not traffic accommodation.
“As is the norm, Sanral will cooperate with any investigation that may follow. Sanral wishes to express its condolences to the bereaved families and wishes the injured a speedy recovery,” said Nkabinde.
According to a preliminary report released by the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Transport on Saturday, 16 people were burnt beyond recognition after a multiple vehicle collision involving three trucks, two minibus taxis and five other cars. Only a seven-year-old boy survived.
The boy was squeezed out of the taxi window by the mother to a Road Traffic Inspectorate (RTI) officer who had been attending to the truck that had overturned.
The boy was rushed to Northdale Hospital and his mother did not survive.