December road deaths almost at 800

The current number of road deaths in SA since the beginning of December is standing at 765.

Two people when killed when a Toyota Venture lost control on the N3 near Bulgowan on 22 December. Picture: ER24

JOHANNESBURG/CAPE TOWN - It's been a weekend of carnage on South Africa's roads.

At least 41 deaths and 44 injuries were reported.

Reports indicate Saturday was the deadliest after 19 people were killed in several accidents in Kwazulu-Natal and the Free State

A number of pedestrians were also killed, including a Joburg man who was hit by a car.

Netcare 911's Santi Steinmann said, "Netcare 911 responded to an accident where a pedestrian was hit and died on the scene due to extensive injuries."

On Sunday five people were killed and seven others injured when a taxi overturned on the N9 in the Eastern Cape near Aberdeen.

Provincial authorities in the North West said 15 people died in three separate accidents over the past two days.

Officials have however confirmed that traffic volumes have decreased significantly since Sunday with a decline in the number of major accidents.

The Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC)'s Ashref Ismail said, "A lot of people are under the impression that because of the lowered traffic volumes, they will break the speed limit. If you are caught driving at these excessive speeds, you will be arrested."

The latest figures show at least 765 people have been killed on the country's roads since the beginning of this month.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Transport Minister, Sindisiwe Chikunga, said authorities will be patrolling and checking vehicles to enforce the rules of the road, as traffic volumes swell ahead of Christmas.

Chikunga interacted with motorists and pedestrians in the Eastern Cape as part of the 2012 National Festive Season Road Safety Campaign.

The number of lives lost on South Africa's roads is fast approaching 800.

Chikunga said the figure is concerning.

"I think there are drivers that are driving under the influence of alcohol."

She said the deaths on the country's roads can be prevented if motorists are more careful.

"We expect our drivers to careful. These are the lives of their passengers, pedestrians, their families and relatives."