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South Africa

Mbalula urges motorists to be careful on roads over long weekend

At least one person is believed to have died and about 80 other people were injured in a crash involving an articulated bus, a bakkie, and an SUV on the R71 (Phalaborwa-Giyani) road between Letsitele and Gravelotte in Limpopo early on Saturday morning. Photo: ER24

At least one person is believed to have died and about 80 other people were injured in a crash involving an articulated bus, a bakkie, and an SUV on the R71 (Phalaborwa-Giyani) road between Letsitele and Gravelotte in Limpopo early on Saturday morning. Photo: ER24

The minister sent his condolences to those who lost loved ones in the Limpopo crash, and wished a speedy recovery to the injured.

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula has urged motorists to exercise extreme caution on the country’s roads this long weekend.

”It comes as two people were killed and around 80 others were injured in a collision involving a bus, a bakkie, and an SUV on the R71 between Letsitele and Gravelotte in Limpopo on Saturday morning,” Mbalulu’s ministry said in a statement.

While the exact cause of the crash was yet to be determined, the transport minister had called on road users to be careful.

“This long weekend also marks the beginning of school holidays for public schools; please be careful as you travel to your holiday destinations, celebrate Father’s Day, and commemorate Youth Day. We don’t want festive occasions to turn into sombre events. Please obey the rules of the road,” the ministry said.

Mbalula had sent his condolences to those who lost loved ones in the crash, and wished a speedy recovery to the injured.

Earlier on Saturday, paramedics said two men had been confirmed to have died and 81 other people were injured in a crash involving an articulated bus, a bakkie, and an SUV on the R71 (Phalaborwa-Giyani) road.

Shortly after 5.30am, paramedics from ER24 and various rescue services, including disaster management, arrived on the scene, ER24 spokesman Werner Vermaak said.

“Multiple patients were found sitting and lying near the bus. A bakkie was found wedged completely under the front of the bus and a third vehicle was found a few metres away.

”Paramedics were able to visualise an occupant trapped in the bakkie under the bus, but were unable to gain access to the victim. Heavy duty rescue services were called to the scene to lift the bus from the bakkie.

“Due to the mechanism it is believed that the [occupant/s have] succumbed to their injuries. Further assessments will be conducted once the bus has been lifted from the bakkie.”

Eighty-one people were found to be injured, mostly minor injuries, on the scene. It was believed that the bus was on its way from Ellisras to Phalaborwa when the crash occurred.

The exact circumstances surrounding the incident were not yet known. Various local authorities were on the scene. The injured people were transported to Maphutha Malatji and Lethaba hospitals, Vermaak said.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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