South Africa is one of the most dangerous places in the world to drive, figuring among the top ten in terms of road accident fatalities. Every year, approximately 14,000 people die on South Africa’s roads, and many more are left seriously injured.
Certain roads across the country are especially deadly. These roads have seen more road accidents and associated fatalities than any others in South Africa, so be particularly careful if you have to drive on them.
The N12 from Springs to Witbank
Number seven on the list is the stretch of the N12 that runs from Springs to Witbank, in Mpumalanga. This length of road had 39 recorded deaths in 2011, most of which were due to human error.
The N2 from Durban to Tongaat
The N2’s first appearance on this list relates to the stretch of the road from Durban to Tongaat. On this part of the N2, a total of 42 deaths were recorded.
The N4 from Middleburg to Belfast
The N4 is no short stretch but this route from Middleburg to Belfast has recorded an unusually high number of deaths. 46 deaths in this stretch of road put it into 5th place on the list.
The N1 from Polokwane to Makhado
As the longest national road in South Africa, it isn’t surprising that the N1 is on the list. The part of the N1 that runs from Polokwane to Makhado is one of the most dangerous, with 47 deaths recorded and a high number of road accident claims.
The N1 from Makhado to Polokwane
It appears that the reverse trip, from Makhado to Polokwane, is even more dangerous, with a total of 54 deaths reported in 2011.
The N2 from Umtata to Kokstad
The N2 is on the list a second time for the stretch from Umtata to Kokstad. Here a shockingly high total of 72 deaths occurred in a single year.
The N2 from East London to Umtata
The N2 has been called one of the deadliest roads in the world – and the deadliest stretch of this road is the one from East London to Umtata. In 2011 alone, this part of the N2 claimed 90 lives.
It’s important to note that the majority of fatal road accidents recorded in this report were chalked down to human error or reckless behaviour, such as speeding, driving when fatigued and aggressive driving. Of course it’s not just bad drivers who are the victims of tragic road accidents – their passengers, people in other vehicles and pedestrians are also among the fatalities.
In South Africa, the Road Accident Fund provides some financial help to those who survive road accidents. However, delays are common and it can be difficult for accident victims to make claims without assistance from legal experts.
Whenever you’re on the road, remember that responsible driving can save lives. Obey the rules of the road, be alert and remember to take regular breaks.