CAPE TOWN – The Department of Transport has released an update on how the National Lockdown is proceeding, including some of the incidences they have had to deal with on Friday. Here’s what they have to say so far ;
1. LAW ENFORCEMENT:
• A total of 22 347 traffic officers have been deployed across the country, to ensure compliance with the published regulations.
• Members of the South African Police Service and security personnel from the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) are on patrol duty in Park Station.
• SANDF as well as all Boarder Management Authority officials (which include members of the South African Police Service,National Traffic Police and Road Traffic Management Corporation officials) are ensuring law enforcement on the main commercial borders: Beitbridge Border and N4 Lebombo Border.
• There are reported cases of a lack of compliance at several township-based taxi ranks in Gauteng, with commuters reporting that some taxis are being filled to capacity and are ferrying people from taxi ranks (which are supposed to be closed to the public).
• There has been a collision on the R56 outside Richmond, approximately 50km from Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu Natal. The
crash between a minibus taxi and a truck occurred in the early hours of the morning, at around 02:00 on Friday 27 March 2020. Six people (including the taxi driver) have died and nine others have been injured in the head on collision. It’s unclear from where in Gauteng the taxi –which was filled to capacity – originated and where in KZN it was headed. An investigation is underway to determine the exact cause ofthe crash.
• There are seafarers on a cruise ship QE2 currently at anchor in Durban. Currently there are no crew changes allowed in any of our ports. The QE2 waiting for clearance outside Durban in order to come in, take bunkers and stores is a typical case. There was another ship two days ago with a similar predicament.
• A male cyclist has been arrested for contravening the Disaster Management Regulation in relation to COVID-19, by cycling on the M1 south freeway near Southgate. The Johannesburg resident told officials that he was attempting to cycle to Cape Town. He has been detained at Mondeor Police Station.
• A group of homeless people have congregated outside Park Station at the South entrance and they are awaiting transportation to places of safety.
• As of 08:00 the queue leading to the Beitbridge Border border was 6kms long. SANDF and all other law enforcement stakeholders are currently in the process of clearing the border of the congestion. There is a concentrated effort to clear freight operators for entry to Zimbabwe and return to South Africa.
• As of 08:00, all lanes were closed at the N4 Lebombo Border, to bring order, as the border was heavily congested and thus chaotic. This led to even more traffic congestion, which impacted negatively on Freight operators. SANDF and other law enforcement authorities are jointly managing the situation and one outgoing and one incoming lane are now operational.