At least 17 dead in long-weekend crashes

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Seven people, including two children, were killed after a vehicle drove into a dam in Maphumulo in KwaZulu-Natal on Sunday.

Emergency Medical Services spokesperson Robert McKenzie said about 25 personnel responded to a call at around 10am on Sunday.

“The deceased included a 10-month-old boy and a three-year-old boy,” he added.

Seven more people were killed in Verena in Mpumalanga, while a further three people were killed in a collision between a truck and a motor vehicle near Delmas, Mpumalanga.

Meanwhile, three people were seriously injured in two separate collisions in Durban and Pretoria, paramedics said.

Two people were seriously injured when three vehicles crashed on the M1 near the Klaarwater off-ramp in Chatsworth, Durban, Rescue Care spokesperson Garrith Jamieson said.

Advanced-life-support paramedics worked to stabilise the pair while the Durban fire department used the jaws-of-life and other equipment to free them from the wreckage.

In a crash a few hours later, a 51-year-old man was critically injured when his bakkie smashed into the centre barrier on the N4 eastbound before the N1 split in Hatfield, Pretoria, ER24 spokesman Russel Meiring said.

In Johannesburg, 11 people were injured when a minibus taxi crashed into a car and rolled on the M1 near the Athol Oaklands turn-off in Johannesburg on Sunday, according to paramedics.

Paramedics, along with other services, arrived on the scene shortly after 9.15am to find the taxi on its roof in the emergency lane, Meiring said.

The occupants managed to climb out of the vehicle and were found seated on the side of the road.

“Paramedics assessed the patients and found that 11 had sustained injuries ranging from minor to moderate.”

Transport Minister Joe Maswanganyi has ordered law-enforcement agencies to be on high alert as holidaymakers return from the Heritage Day long weekend.

He called on officials to patrol all known hazardous areas across South Africa to ensure reckless road users are arrested.

African News Agency

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