Paramedics have reported that eight people were injured on Tuesday morning in KwaZulu-Natal and one in North West province as a result of heavy rainfall across the country.
In the first accident in Pietermaritzburg, seven people were injured, including six children aged between 13 and 16, who were believed to be on their way to school, when two taxis collided at the French and Prince Albert roads intersection.
ER24 spokesperson Russel Meiring said paramedics responded through the rush-hour traffic and arrived on scene shortly after 7am.
“Upon arrival, paramedics found one taxi sitting in the middle of the road while the second taxi had come to rest against the roadside barriers,” Meiring said.
“Upon inspection, paramedics found that seven people from the second taxi had been injured in the collision.”
Meiring said it was believed that one of the taxis failed to stop at the traffic light, apparently causing the collision.
“It is also understood that the heavy rains were a contributing factor,” Meiring said.
Meiring said paramedics treated the patients and thereafter transported them to Edendale Provincial Hospital for further treatment.
Meanwhile, ER24 said a 52-year-old man was also left seriously injured in another accident after his vehicle crashed into a light pole on the N12 outside Potchefstroom in North West.
Meiring said paramedics responded through the heavy rain to a call at 4:50am.
He said paramedics found a light motor vehicle sitting on the centre medium wrapped around a light pole.
“Closer inspection of the vehicle showed that the driver lay trapped inside his vehicle in a critical condition,” Meiring said.
“Rescue services had to use specialised tools to free the patient in an operation that lasted for 30 minutes.”
Meiring said once freed, paramedics treated the man and provided him with numerous advanced life support interventions after which he was transported to Potchefstroom Provincial Hospital for urgent care.
“It is believed that the heavy rain was a contributing factor to the cause of the collision,” Meiring said.
The Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) has urged motorists and public transport to be cautious on the roads as unfavourable weather conditions were set to spread throughout the country.
– African News Agency (ANA)