SANRAL AND KZN GOVERNMENT STRIVE TO PAVE A SMOOTH ROAD
TO THE COAST FOR HOLIDAYMAKERS
KZN, 29 November 2022 – Holidaymakers preparing to join the annual pilgrimage down to KwaZulu-Natal can rest assured that the South African National Roads Agency SOC Limited (SANRAL) and the provincial government are working hard to ensure that the N3 to the coast runs smooth and safe this festive season.
The province recently launched its Integrated Safety Month and Festive Season Enforcement Campaign, which seeks to promote safety on the road and curb crime.
SANRAL is finishing up work at Town Hill (Peter Brown), on the N3 between Sanctuary and Link Road, to ensure that holiday traffic will flow smoothly come December.
KZN Premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube assured visitors to the province that their safety was the Zulu Kingdom’s number one priority and additional law enforcement officers would “be out in full force” to ensure holidaymakers have a memorable stay.
Dube-Ncube said KZN was expecting a very busy festive season and police had declared a zero-tolerance policy for motorists who violate rules of the road. “Deaths on our roads have reached crisis levels. One death is one too many,” said the premier.
SANRAL, National Traffic Police under RTMC, RTI, and other provincial and local roads authorities are working together to make our roads safer, hence many joint operations that involves all spheres of government.
SANRAL and KZN Department of Transport are also engaging with the freight and logistics industry because our roads cannot be turned into mass grave sites and places of untimely deaths. The ongoing engagements involve participation in CSI initiatives, as well as prioritizing law enforcement and visible policing, which ultimately result in behaviour change.
SANRAL had indicated that work at Town Hill will be wrapped up by the holiday so that the road is fully open, given the significant increase in traffic volumes during the festive holiday season.
Various measures were taken by SANRAL to ensure traffic safety during the construction period. Extra road signage and warnings were posted from as far as 2km away from the working zone, alerting motorists to the fact that only two lanes of the highway were open each way. CCTV cameras were installed, more flag persons were on duty and additional officers from the national, provincial and local traffic authorities added their efforts to SANRAL’s road safety initiatives.
Advanced, high-visibility warnings and speed-restriction signage, requiring heavy vehicles to travel not more than 40km/hr within the construction zone, was also part of the safety plan.
All heavy vehicles were compelled to undergo a stop before proceeding down the steep south-bound carriageway.
SANRAL began work on the project in March last year. Changes to procurement regulations and the onset of the global Covid-19 pandemic had delayed the start of construction. The total repair costs are estimated around R340-million.
Thabiso Dladla, SANRAL Eastern Region project manager said SANRAL had employed safety measures on the Town Hill N3 project that go far beyond legal or contractual compliance. Dladla said the project had opened up many job opportunities for locals and skilled South Africans from across the country.
The project engaged specialist engineers, supervising engineers, road construction plant operators, expert road layers, technicians and other professionals and a host of general workers.
Nonhlanhla Mncwabe, a 28-year-old from iMbali township in Pietermaritzburg, said she was unemployed before the project gave her new hope. The mother of one was among a group of workers completing construction of a guard drain on the southern carriageway. She was engaged in cleaning and general work.
“I started working here in April last year and the money I make has allowed me not only to help put food on the table for my family, but I’ve also been able to extend our home, fix the roof and fence our family home,” she said.
Nokuthula Mkhize, 41, a flag person on the project, said she was initially fearful of being run over by big trucks on the N3 but soon got used to her job. “This job has allowed me to do many things for my family. I have been able to pay medical insurance for my eight-year-old son, who is epileptic, and also pay for his caregiver,” she said.