Three cheers to SANRAL for taking action to prevent a similar incident which occurred earlier this year when Christopher Kgomo, a driver for Time Link Cargo, was killed after locals threw a boulder from a pedestrian bridge near De Doorns. This is an extract from the story which FleetWatch ran at the time:
“On the morning of May 12th, a Time Link Cargo rig was driving on the N1 past De Doorns when suddenly a boulder smashed through the windscreen. The boulder was either thrown from or had been hung by rope from a pedestrian bridge by a group of criminals. It hit the driver who then lost control of the vehicle and it rolled. His co-driver was trying to free him from where he was trapped between the seat and the steering wheel when a crowd of looters descended, some going for the cargo – R2,5-million worth of clothing – and others scrambling into the cab to loot what they could. In their frenzy of heartless greed, they didn’t help the driver. Instead, they trampled him to death. His co-driver thankfully escaped the mob. The driver’s name was Christopher Kgomo – a good and honest man who left behind a wife and two children.”
Randall Cable, regional manager, western region for SANRAL, tells FleetWatch that after this incident, SANRAL took the decision to encage the pedestrian bridge so as to prevent stone throwing from the bridge. This is now complete.
“We are also building sidewalks to keep pedestrians away from the truckers and motorists and although the street lighting damage and vandalism is extensive, we will continue to repair and bring it back to operational condition as soon as possible,” he says.
He adds that they are also constructing permanent CCTV cameras and associated masts. “We’ll be installing CCTV cameras linked to the Transport Management Centre, in Cape Town where CCTV cameras are monitored in real time,” he says.
FleetWatch compliments SANRAL on taking this action to protect our truck drivers who provide a vital service to the country. Salute!