Drunk driving accounts for 27.1% of fatal crashes in SA, report finds

The research was conducted by the RTMC in collaboration with the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC), and the University of South Africa (Unisa).

FILE: At least 8 people were killed in a multi-vehicle accident in Jozini in northern KwaZulu-Natal on 10 June 2020. Picture: Twitter @_arrivealive

JOHANNESBURG - The Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) on Thursday said that research showed that drunk driving accounted for 27.1% of fatal crashes in the country.

The research was conducted by the RTMC in collaboration with the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC), and the University of South Africa (Unisa).

The report titled _Driver intoxication and fatal crashes _showed that drunk driving was estimated to cost the local economy R18.2 billion annually. It also showed that 55% of fatal crashes happened at night and about three out of five happened over the weekends.

As a result, the RTMC called on officials to step up operations against drunk driving.

This after five people were killed in a head-on collision in Benoni on Tuesday night. The drivers of both vehicles were suspected to have been under the influence of alcohol.

On Tuesday, the alcohol sales ban was lifted as the country moved to level two of the nationwide lockdown. And there are fears of a dramatic increase in casualties at hospitals due to alcohol-related injuries.

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