Warning about increase in road crashes on SA roads

In 2021, 235 people died over the Easter weekend and authorities are anticipating even more traffic on our roads this year.

The Vehicle Testing Association (VTA), a proud association of the Retail Motor Industry Organisation (RMI), says already this year the statistics are not looking good. Julian Pillay, VTA national director, says during the month of January for example, the country recorded 637 fatal crashes accounting for 774 fatalities.

Minister of Transport, Fikile Mbalula, said that all provinces in January, with the exception of KwaZulu-Natal and the Free State, had recorded year on year increases in road fatalities.

Pillay says VTA support any innovative solutions to make our roads safer and applauded government’s efforts to come up with solutions to do that.

He specifically highlighted:

•             A focussed national pedestrian programme targeting all hazardous routes.

•             Effective road safety education and awareness campaigns to address risky behaviour among the youth. These campaigns will be rolled out in institutions of higher education and youth-oriented platforms. They will include use of influential role models to drive the messaging.

•             An increased focus on driver and vehicle fitness with various stakeholders. SAPS have confirmed they will scale up their drunk driving operations on Thursday and continue these throughout the weekend.

Pillay says to add to the above interventions proposed by government, the VTA believes that vehicles should be constantly maintained and kept in a roadworthy and safe condition. The best way to achieve this is through Periodic vehicle testing and inspection (PTI).  There is no doubt this will have a positive impact on road safety, and decrease the number of fatalities from road crashes.

“While there are many commendable road safety initiatives, Periodic Vehicle Testing and inspection (PTI) which has been mooted for many years is still the area that we believe will have the most positive impact on road casualties in our country.  We need to find ways to promote a culture of compliance in other aspects of road safety and periodic testing would go a long way to ensure this,” concludes Pillay.