Western Cape traffic chief Kenny Africa says officials are preparing for a major crackdown on the province’s roads from tonight.
Yesterday, provincial traffic officials arrested a motorist on the N1 outside Laingsburg for excessive speeding.
Africa said the man, driving a black BMW sedan and who told traffic officers that he was rushing to make his flight from OR Tambo International Airport, was travelling more than 180km/h.
“Unfortunately he did not make his flight and is now locked up in a cell in Laingsburg,” said Africa.
“We won’t be taking any nonsense on the roads this weekend. Reckless and drunk drivers will be arrested.”
The national Transport Department said that 1 400 motorists had been arrested across the country for various traffic offences since the start of the festive season.
From December 1 to 18, 1 434 motorists were arrested, including 501 for drunk driving; 93 for excessive speed; 37 for reckless and/or negligent driving; 104 for overloading; 420 for not being in possession of valid public transport permits; 16 for not being in possession of a valid driving licence; 22 for false documents; and 241 for other offences.
Transport Ministry spokesman Logan Maistry said reckless drivers would be shown no mercy.
“The message is clear: they will be arrested,” said Maistry.
As part of the December holiday road safety plan, Transport Minister S’bu Ndebele joined law enforcement officers at a roadblock, and also visited a tavern in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal.
He handed out disposable self-test breathalysers and encouraged road users to test their alcohol levels before getting on to the roads.
“Road users, particularly passengers utilising public transport, must speak out against bad driving,” said Ndebele.
“Commuters in buses and taxis must not allow themselves to be carried around like a bag of potatoes. They must not keep quiet and must refuse to get into overloaded vehicles as their rights include that of safe movement.