CAPE TOWN - Western Cape MEC for transport and public works Daylin Mitchell said his department noted lower road-related facilities from December 27 until January 2.
Provincial Traffic Services implemented 52 integrated roadblocks, vehicle checkpoints and speed control operations across the province during this period, and officials stopped and checked 38 049 vehicles.
“When looking at the number of vehicles on our roads, it is clear that the vast majority of road users are responsible and law-abiding, but unfortunately, there are those who gamble with their own and other road users’ lives.
“These are the ones who have to understand that the public road network is not a place in which to act irresponsibly and endanger the lives of fellow users,” Mitchell said.
Officials recorded a total of 428 speeding offences and issued 9 505 fines for various traffic violations ranging from driver to vehicle fitness to the amount of R8 525 750.
A total of 33 vehicles were impounded, and 83 vehicles were discontinued for unroadworthiness.
“I want to thank all road users who keep their vehicles in a roadworthy condition. The number of vehicles discontinued or impounded again shows that the majority of our road users support us in our goal to keep roads safe,” Mitchell said.
He said speeding, however, remains a concern, with the highest speeds recorded being 161 km/h in a 120 km/h zone.
Among the successes by his department, Mitchell said 55 arrests were made under the National Road Traffic Act, Criminal Procedure Act, and Disaster Management Act regulations, of which 31 were for driving under the influence of alcohol.
Mitchell said although the figure reflects a high success rate, drunk driving remains a concern.
Other arrests included speeding, reckless and negligent driving, possession of fraudulent documentation, bribery, defeating the ends of justice, possession of an illegal substance, and failure to stop at the direction of a traffic official.
“While considerably lower than the figures for last week, the number of road fatalities this week remains concerning to me. However, traffic volumes were higher as people returned home after the New Year’s long weekend and fatalities were lower.
“I thank every road user who continues to drive, cycle and walk responsibly,” Mitchell said.
He said 22 crashes were recorded during this period with a total of 32 fatalities which included a cyclist, motorcyclist, three drivers, 11 pedestrians and 16 passengers.
Mitchell has urged motorists and road users to practise patience, avoid reckless and negligent driving and rest sufficiently after every two hours of their journey as everyone prepares to return to their respective academic destinations, working year and as industries open for 2022.