Monday, 5 May 2014

ZSwaziland: At least 13 people die in collision

At least 13 people died in a head-on collision yesterday involving an Iveco midibus and an Opel Corsa Utility van.

About 19 people were rushed to Good Shepherd Hospital. The gruesome accident happened near Mbadlane and Malindza when an Iveco midibus trading under the name Thulas Transport collided with a white Opel Corsa van. Thulas Transport is said to have been travelling from the Manzini direction towards Siteki while the Corsa was driving towards Manzini.

The van had six people on board; two were at the back of the bakkie while the four were in the front. “There was a man and a woman with two minors in the front. There were also two people sitting at the back. They all died on the spot,” a witness said.

The witness further said the people who had been sitting in front in the Corsa van were trapped for over an hour before they could be retrieved.

It is said that when the collision happened, some people tried to get out through the windows of the midibus. “When the midibus and the Corsa collided, some people tried to escape through the windows. It was in that moment that some were injured and others lost their lives,” the witness said.

Lucky Mngometulu, the driver of the midibus said he was driving from Manzini while the Corsa was driving towards the opposite direction. He said the accident was caused by the Corsa which suddenly switched lanes towards the oncoming Iveco.

“I was driving towards Siteki when the Corsa utility van came speeding on my lane. It was overtaking. The next sound I heard was a loud bang when the two vehicles collided,” he said.

The road was closed for over two hours as the vehicles had blocked it. Police had to control the traffic on the side to ease the congestion. Debris of shattered glass were scattered all over the tarmac while bodies were also sprawled all over the place. Police Deputy Public Relations Officer Assistant Superintendent Khulani Mamba confirmed the accident. He said 13 people were confirmed dead while 19 were rushed to hospital. “There were 13 people who died in an accident around Mbadlane. The accident involved an Iveco and an Opel Corsa Utility van. What we gathered is that all the passengers in the Utility van died. Police are investigating the cause of the accident,” he said.

Mamba pleaded with the public to drive within the speed limit as in most instances, speed contributes. This accident happened just five days after another horrific accident along Malagwane where, according to the police, two people died while 35 were injured and five were reported to be in a critical condition. Government has initiated an inquiry to establish what could have caused the accident.

Monday 05 May 2014


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