MEC for police, roads and transport Sam Mashinini has expressed his sadness at the loss of four lives during an accident that occurred near Kroonstad yesterday morning, involving an emergency services ambulance (EMS).
Another five people sustained life threatening injuries, two have minor injuries, while one person survived the accident unscathed.
The horrific accident happened after the high care ambulance overturned between Kroonstad and Vredefort (R721).
The department said after the ambulance had overturned two members of the public acted as volunteer traffic conductors alerting oncoming drivers to the accident scene.
It is during this time that another ambulance approached the scene and hit the overturned ambulance, instantly killing one of the volunteer traffic conductors.
The department said after hitting the overturned ambulance, the oncoming one went on to collide head on with an oncoming truck.
“Once again, one road incident has affected many households. Breadwinners were killed or sustained life-altering injuries and a number of families have been affected. This is very sad indeed,” said MEC Mashinini in passing condolences to the families.
“I hereby wish to extend my deepest condolences to the families who have lost their loved ones and I pray that those who were injured will recover fully,” he said.
He noted the government is working hard to minimise fatalities on its roads in support of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2020. But government cannot achieve this alone without the support and participation of all stakeholders in the sector.
“We would like to appeal to all drivers to do their best to stay alert on the road and avoid distractions while driving.”
The MEC added that the department constantly warns all road users, including drivers, passengers, pedestrians and cyclists to respect the rules of the road at all times as road safety depends on them.
Meanwhile the department of police, roads and transport will be holding an interdenominational prayer service on Sunday in Parys, Tumahole to plead for change in the attitude and conduct of road users.
The programme forms part of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 campaign, which aims to reduce road carnage globally by 50% by the year 2020.