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13 Killed In South Africa’s Road Accident

While South Africa has one of the African continent's most developed road networks, it also suffers from one of the worst safety records.


A file photo of South Africa’s road.

 

Thirteen people died  Tuesday in a head-on collision between a minibus taxi and a truck on a major road in South Africa’s northern province of Limpopo, transport authorities said.

The accident happened around dawn on the highway outside Polokwane, 320 kilometres (200 miles) from the country’s economic hub Johannesburg.

“Thirteen people have died. There was no survivor,” Limpopo media liaison officer Vongani Chauke told AFP, adding that the taxi had 11 people on board, nine of them female.

The cause of the accident is under investigation but a preliminary examination showed the driver of the truck — travelling in thick mist — lost control of his vehicle before colliding with the taxi.

“The accident happened due to reckless driving,” Chauke said.

At least two bodies, including the truck driver, were yet to be removed from the wreckage.

Regional transport minister Florence Radzilani who visited the scene said most of the passengers in the minibus were teachers headed to work.

“We are truly devastated as a province,” she told Newzroom Afrika television.

While South Africa has one of the African continent’s most developed road networks, it also suffers from one of the worst safety records.

In March, 45 pilgrims travelling from Botswana for Easter festivities died when their bus plunged off a bridge into a ravine and caught fire in Limpopo.

An eight-year-old girl survived the grisly crash that left some bodies burned beyond recognition.

AFP