Police have finally arrested the truck driver who fled the scene after crashing into a bakkie in KwaZulu-Natal, killing 19 children.
TRUCK DRIVER FOUND AFTER FLEEING THE SCENE
The man who drove the truck on the N2 highway and plunged into a bakkie which killed 19 children immediately fled the scene. Two adults were also killed in the fatal head-on collision. The children were aged between 5 and 12 years and some of them succumbed to their injuries in hospital.
The truck driver, who had speedily overtaken another truck before crashing into the bakkie, got out of the truck, managed to hitch-hike a lift and fled.
Police launched a widespread manhunt after the truck driver fled the scene.
But he later handed himself over to the police, said Speaker of the KwaZulu-Natal legislature Nontembeko Boyce.
She said the occurrence of these accidents sends a chilling message.
“As an oversight arm, we shall monitor the government’s interventions to curb the situation through our transport portfolio committee. Government must redouble their efforts for safer roads and we urge all South Africans to adhere to all road safety laws and cooperate with law enforcement.”Nontembeko Boyce
ALSO READ: Ramaphosa mourns the death of multiple children in KZN accident
ACCIDENT SADDENS LEADERSHIP INCLUDING RAMAPHOSA AND UNICEF
Boyce said the legislature extended their heartfelt condolences to the families of the deceased.
“[We] pray that they find strength and courage in this time of grief to deal with this loss. All stakeholders must work together to make our roads safer,” said Boyce.
Meanwhile, President Cyril Ramaphosa said the tragic accident is a sad moment for the country. He likened it to the 21 deaths of young teenagers at the Enyobeni Tavern in the Eastern Cape in June.
“We cannot afford to lose such precious lives under any conditions. I hope the investigation into the Pongola incident will shed light on the cause of this tragedy and help us take better care of our children in the future,” Ramaphosa said.
The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) has also expressed their sadness for the horrific collision.
“UNICEF South Africa is deeply saddened to learn of the tragic accident that happened on the N2… Our hearts go out to all their families and we mourn with them,” Unicef said.
ALSO READ: N2 Pongola horror crash: At least 19 learners confirmed dead
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