STATE OF THE NATIONAL ROAD NETWORK DURING THE FESTIVE SEASON
Pretoria, 12 December 2021 – The South African National Roads Agency SOC Limited (SANRAL) hereby advises road users of the state of the national road network, during this festive season.
While the national road network makes up just over 22 000km of South Africa’s total road network of 750 000km, it carries the bulk of traffic during the December/January holiday period, when interprovincial and international road travel peaks.
On the main, the road construction industry will shut down operations on the 15th of December 2021 and resume on the 10th of January 2022.
“However, there are instances where minor work will be ongoing during the holiday break, for essential operations. We will try as much as possible to minimise the impact on traffic flow by containing works to daylight hours and limiting work on weekends and public holidays,” said Vusi Mona, SANRAL General Manager: Communications and Marketing.
The following traffic accommodation should be taken into account when planning holiday travel:
Northern Region (Gauteng, Mpumalanga, Limpopo and North West)
Stop/Go traffic accommodations can be expected on the R37 Section 2, near Lydenburg, and on the R33 Section 14 outside Vaal Water.
“No Routine Road Maintenance (RRM) is anticipated on the network during this time. However, should an emergency arise, such as the development of a pothole, urgent RRM arrangements will be made to attend it,” said Madoda Mthembu, SANRAL Operations and Maintenance Manager for the Northern Region.
On the N4, the following should be noted.
RRM will continue with day-to-day tasks which include grass cutting and painting of road markings. Road markings will specifically occur on the Mozambique side, between Tchumene and Xai Xai Interchanges, and on the South African side, between Kaalrug and Komatipoort.
Southern Region (Eastern Cape)
There will be ongoing maintenance works on the N2 Section 13 between Grahamstown and the Fish River, with speed restrictions in place. The work involves patching and is expected to continue throughout the holiday period.
On the R355 and R342, between Addo and Nguni River Lodge, approximately 15km is under construction. There will be two Stop/Go closures along this stretch of road, with reduced speed limits of 60km/h in place. The potential delay in travelling from Addo to Paterson is about 20 to 25 minutes.
Eastern Region (KZN and Free State)
“Generally, two-way traffic will be maintained on all construction sites. For the N3 upgrades, a minimum of two lanes per direction will be maintained,” said Ravi Ronny, SANRAL Design and Construction Manager for the Eastern Region.
At the N3 Town Hill project in Pietermaritzburg, a minimum of two lanes are open in each direction. The construction team will however aim to have three lanes open on the southbound side. Work will continue for a short period during the holiday, making sure to minimise disruption to traffic flow.
Western Region (Western Cape and Northern Cape)
With the upgrades to the Huguenot Tunnel complete, there will be no tunnel closures. The N7 and N1 will largely have free-flowing traffic. On the N2, there will be ongoing patching, between Swellendam and Riversdale, and a short portion east of Wilderness, throughout the holiday period.
“Repairing and maintaining the pavement is essential to road safety. We apologise for any inconvenience that may be caused as a result of the sporadic Stop/Go traffic accommodation. We will however endeavour to minimise the impact on traffic flow.” said Randall Cable, SANRAL Western Region Manager.
SANRAL’s Mona concluded: “After a trying year, many people are looking forward to the holidays, to spend time with their loved ones. We call on all road users to play their part in ensuring safer roads this festive season. If you will be driving, please take time to rest, ensure that your vehicle is roadworthy and safe, adhere to the speed restrictions, particularly around construction sites and be patient as some national roads are more congested than usual. Pedestrians are our most vulnerable road users, and we appeal to motorists to always be on the lookout for pedestrians.”