Johannesburg – Transport Minister Joe Maswanganyi says the country’s traffic law enforcement officers will continue to conduct roadblocks throughout the country during this festive season and beyond.
Minister Maswanganyi said law enforcement operations will target enforcement around wearing seatbelts, using cell phones while driving and un-roadworthy vehicles. Officers will continue to clamp down on drunken driving, excessive speed and other moving violations.
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“It is a universally accepted fact that conspicuous patrol of freeways, streets and public places by uniformed officers in conspicuously marked vehicles is the best means available for the prevention of road traffic violations,” Minister Maswanganyi said.
The country’s national routes including the N1, N2, N3 and N4 are amongst those experiencing an increase in the number of vehicles travelling towards various destinations.
Minister Maswanganyi said although a decision has been taken to make road safety a 365-day business, it is inevitable that the department doubles-up efforts around the festive season.
The National Traffic Police, located within the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC), is in partnership with provincial and municipal traffic authorities and the South African Police Service to reduce and where possible eliminate the risk of crashes on the roads.
“They do their work despite hostility from uncooperative motorists at times with one primary objective in mind: to save people’s lives. The carnage we continue to experience on our roads is instigated by a number of factors, mostly embedded in human behaviour and vehicle factor.
“Road safety, first and foremost, is an individual road user’s responsibility. Once this notion is lost on any road user — motorists, passengers and pedestrians alike — the battle against road carnage is undermined,” Minister Maswanganyi said.
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He urged motorists to observe these guidelines:
- Drive at a safe speed and always observe the speed limit.
- Always wear your seat belt and ensure that passengers do the same.
- Do not drink and drive.
- Follow other vehicles at a safe distance.
- Do not use a mobile phone while driving.
- Overtake with care.
- Take regular breaks – at least every two hours.
- Before you drive a vehicle ensure that the vehicle is properly licensed and has a valid insurance policy,
- You have the valid and appropriate license to drive the vehicle.
- Pedestrians are also urged to follow these guidelines:
- Always cross the road at designated pedestrian or zebra crossings.
- Always use footpaths where they are available.
- Do not cross at bends in the road where you cannot see the danger of oncoming vehicles.
- If you are walking in a group, walk in single file facing oncoming traffic.
- When crossing the road, be attentive and on the lookout for oncoming vehicles.