Rapid rise in W. Cape road accidents

Provincial authorities are worried about a sudden rise in road deaths recently.

Western Cape authorities are worried about the sudden rise in road deaths in recent weeks.

CAPE TOWN - Western Cape authorities have expressed concern over a rise in fatal accidents on the province's roads over the past few weeks.

Nine people were killed in collisions in Bellville, the Karoo and outside Knysna over the weekend.

On Saturday night, five people, including a mother and her three-month old baby boy, died when a truck and car collided head-on in Knysna.

Provincial traffic chief Kenny Africa said the rate of accidents was unacceptable.

"We are doing everything in our power to stop this nonsense on our roads, to make sure that when people are on our roads, they are safe. We are urging people not to overtake at places where it is unsafe to do so."

Western Cape Transport MEC Robin Carlisle said at least 10 people have died in accidents every weekend recently.

"It seems to be very unlikely that the death toll will reduce this month relative to the same time last year."

A worried Carlisle said he believed alcohol may have played a role in the Knysna accident on the N2.

However, the police's Malcolm Pojie was unable confirm this.

"The bodies of the deceased were identified by family members. The investigation continues and we've opened a case of culpable homicide."

Carlisle admitted he was not sure what the underlying cause for the recent rise in vehicle accidents was.