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Some Joburg residents ignoring travel warnings and heading to other provinces

In Joburg, long-distance taxi ranks were experiencing high volumes of commuters leaving the city.

FILE: The De Hoek Toll Plaza on the N3. Picture: Supplied

JOHANNESBURG - As the clock counts down to midnight on Thursday, some citizens were heading home from urban centres.

In Joburg, long-distance taxi ranks were experiencing high volumes of commuters leaving the city. This was despite Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula urging people not to travel to other provinces and districts during this period.

The Wanderers Taxi Rank was busier than usual as hundreds of people were leaving the city to spend the next three weeks with their families.

Taxi marshals were busy directing passengers heading to provinces including KwaZulu-Natal, Eastern and Northern Cape and Mpumalanga.

Some marshals were providing sanitisers to passengers as they boarded the taxis.

Other commuters were using protective gear while others were not. And social distancing was not occurring as queues continued to grow.

Businesses were also booming for street vendors.

GALLERY: Aerial view of South Africans queuing for goods before lockdown

Meanwhile, traffic volumes on the N3 between Johannesburg and KwaZulu-Natal were steadily increasing.

That meant that hundreds of South Africans were ignoring government’s plea not to travel out of Gauteng ahead of the lockdown.

The N3 Toll Concession’s Con Roux said they were beginning to see heavy traffic on the highway.

“We are expecting traffic to pick up a little during the course of the day. Just yesterday the number of vehicles picked at over 1,000 vehicles per hour. My expectation is that traffic will be higher today,” he said.

WATCH: COVID-19 Situation Desk - 26 March 2020

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