SA's road death toll stands at 980

RTMC says SA's road death toll has reached a staggering 980.

The wreckage of a car involved in an accident on the N1 between Laingsburg and Beaufort Wes on Sunday 16 December 2012. Picture: Melvyn Boiskin/iWitness.

JOHANNESBURG/CAPE TOWN - The Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) have confirmed that over 980 deaths have been reported on the country's roads since the beginning of December.

The corporation's Ashraf Ismail said, "We would like to appeal to all motorists to exercise caution and obey all traffic rules and regulations during this joyous and happy time of year."

In the latest accident, at least 10 people, including a baby, died on the N3 near Pietermaritzburg.

The three-week-old baby boy died after he was ejected from a vehicle which rolled over.

Both his parents survived the accident.

In another incident in the Free State on the R73 between Welkom and Virginia, two people died when one vehicle collided with another, which was stationary at the side of the road.

ER24's Vanessa Jackson said paramedics had a busy night.

"There were 10 people who were killed in motor vehicle accidents last night between 8pm and 6am this morning. Around 26 accidents were attended to in this time by our paramedics."

Meanwhile, Western Cape Transport MEC Robin Carlisle said there have been more deadly road accidents involving private cars this festive season compared to previous years.

The province's road death toll has climbed to 130.

Carlisle said that in the past, bus and taxi commuters made up the majority of road deaths.

But he said this has changed.

"The emphasis is starting to move away from public transport to the average John driving a motor car with his family in the back. and this is a major concern for us."

Ismail admitted the corporation won't reach its goal of reducing the death toll by 25 percent this festive season.