'Negligence contributes to growing road deaths'

Western Cape experienced an 18 percent hike in road deaths over December.

A fatal accident involving a Golden Arrow bus, a BMW and a taxi caused major delays on Stellenbosch Arterial Road last month. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - The Western Cape Transport Department says there's been an "alarming spike in the number of roads deaths" in the province since the start of the festive season, compared to the same period in 2014.

One hundred and forty-three people lost their lives on the province's roads over December, an 18 percent increase on the previous year's death toll.

MEC Donald Grant says he is most concerned about the increase in passenger deaths.

"I was driving to work this morning and I saw one child standing in the backseat with both parents in the front. The parents are buckled up, but the child wasn't. It's that kind of negligence that can cost a child its life."

Meanwhile, the Road Traffic Management Corporation has warned that motorists should expect long delays on the roads this week.

The holiday season draws to a close, sending thousands of people back home.

The roads will be packed and traffic authorities will remain on high alert.

The corporation's Simon Zwane says traffic volumes will increase on all major routes.

"Today, they have gone done quite substantially, we have seen 2,000 vehicles over the weekend passing through the toll gate [per] hour. Yesterday, they had subsided to around 1,400 but we expect that they will be busy over the weekend - especially Saturday and Sunday."

CASE AGAINST DJ BLACK COFFEE POSTPONED

In Gauteng, the case against popular DJ Black Coffee, Nkosinathi Maphumulo, was postponed to next month.

Maphumulo appeared in court today on charges of reckless and negligent driving after was caught for allegedly speeding.

He was clocked driving 200 kilometres in a 120 kilometre zone on Christmas Eve on the N1 Highway.

He was held at the Florida Police Station and released on R1,000 bail on the same day.

The house DJ took to Twitter the next day to explain himself, saying he has never committed an offence like this before and he regretted breaking the law.