Although truck traffic build-up is not a new dilemma on this part of the route, volumes have escalated considerably since September 2019.
As the holiday season approaches – during which high traffic volumes are expected on the N4 Toll Route – Trans African Concessions (TRAC) remains concerned about the truck backlog on the route to the Lebombo Border Post.
The delays, about which concerns were raised earlier this month, have intensified, with truck queues now starting 5km from the Komati Load Control Centre on some days.
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.
Lack of capacity
Road users, local landowners and businesses have approached TRAC about the problem, which has TRAC extremely concerned for numerous reasons.
These queues not only block farm and business entrances, they also obstruct traffic flow and create safety hazards, which are concerning ahead of the upcoming peak travel period.
TRAC recently met with Lebombo Border Post management and other stakeholders to understand the reasons behind the backlog, which, according to officials, is mostly due to a lack of capacity at the border.
The officials said that the truck traffic is simply too excessive to be accommodated adequately.
In a bid to improve safety in the affected area and alleviate some of the frustration, TRAC has erected a four-way stop at the Komatipoort/Sasol Garage Intersection.
TRAC believes this will at least improve vehicle movement across the intersection.
However, further intervention from the relevant authorities is needed to eradicate the problem.
Clearing procedures must improve drastically and additional human resources are required, especially during the upcoming holiday season.
TRAC is also of the opinion that expansion is overdue at the Komati Load Control Centre, which is managed by TRAC and owned by SANRAL.
This should include the expansion of the facility through the addition of a second layby and improvements to the access road.
In view of the build-up, TRAC urges all road users to take care when driving on this section of the route, to remain patient and adhere to road regulations.
TRAC also encourages road users to plan their trips, especially over the holiday period when high traffic volumes are expected.
The Lebombo Border will be operational 24-hours a day from 13 December 2019 to 13 January 2020, which will alleviate some of the congestion.
For more information, traffic updates or to report a problem, call TRAC’s 24-hour Helpdesk on 0800 87 22 64/082 881 4444 (RSA) or +258 84 34 34 34 6 (Moz). Alternatively, follow on Twitter @TRACN4Route.