Road users, local landowners and businesses have approached TRAC about the problem as excessive truck traffic causes queues of up to 7km long.
Trans African Concessions (TRAC) has received numerous complaints and been repeatedly questioned about the truck backlog between the Komati Load Control Centre and the Lebombo Border Post over the past few weeks, which is having a negative impact on the N4 Toll Route.
Although truck traffic build-up is not a new dilemma on this part of the route, truck traffic volumes have escalated considerably since September 2019 following Transnet’s temporary halt of its rail service to Maputo Port.
This has resulted in a 30% increase in trucks going through the border post.
Road users, local landowners and businesses have approached TRAC about the problem as the excessive truck traffic causes queues of up to 7km long. These queues obstruct traffic flow and create safety hazards.
Standing trucks also block farm and business entrances, creating major frustration for the local community.
As border and road users themselves, TRAC fully understands the frustration as they are not immune to the problem.
One of TRAC’s own trucks recently took over 54 hours to be cleared at the border, which indicates a serious problem.
Meeting the Lebombo Management
In a bid to understand the matter, TRAC recently met with Lebombo Border Post Management and other stakeholders, who confirmed the truck traffic is simply too excessive to be adequately accommodated at the Lebombo Border.
Clearing lanes and human resources urgently need to be improved.
Although some measures have been implemented to alleviate the problem, they have not been as effective as expected.
TRAC has also approached SANRAL, via the Department of Transport, to assist as it is expected to get worse over the festive season when traffic volumes to the border post are traditionally very high.
TRAC believes the backlogs will decrease if the clearing of trucks at the border post improves.
TRAC is also of the opinion that an expansion at the Komati Load Control Centre, which is managed by TRAC and owned by SANRAL, is overdue.
This should include the expansion of the facility through the addition of a second lay-bye and improvements to the access road.
TRAC offered to assist with a project of this nature a few years ago, but this was declined.
In view of the above, and while a better solution is sought, TRAC urges all road users to take care when driving on this section of the route.
Although TRAC fully understand the current status quo causes frustration for all affected parties, they appeal to all to respect road regulations and signage to avoid further complications.
To alleviate some of the frustration, TRAC has agreed to erect a four-way stop at the Komatipoort/Sasol Garage Intersection.
We are confident this will improve vehicle movement across the intersection.