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THREE family members died while three others were injured yesterday when a vehicle they were travelling in burst a front tyre and overturned at Insuza along the Bulawayo-Victoria Falls highway.
The accident occurred at the 71km peg at about 3.30PM.
Bulawayo Fire Brigade senior divisional officer Mr Linos Phiri yesterday said the car which was involved in the accident had six members of a Harare family on board who were travelling to Victoria Falls on holiday.
“Six family members from Borrowdale in Harare were on board the Toyota Hilux when its front tyre burst resulting in the car overturning at the 71km peg in Insuza along the Bulawayo- Victoria Falls highway.
“Three people died on the spot while three others were injured. One of the injured was trapped in the car and extricated by the Fire Brigade crew at about 4.30 PM,” said Mr Phiri.
He said those who died were aged 10, 12 and 30 years.
The injured were rushed to Mater Dei Hospital in Bulawayo.
The Insuza accident puts the road accident death toll to seven since New Year’s Day and 35 since Christmas Day. Police had earlier yesterday said four people died in road traffic accidents on New Year’s Day. One hundred and eighty five crashes have occurred since December 25.
National Police spokesperson, Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi, yesterday said although fewer deaths and accidents were recorded on January 1 this year compared to the same date last year, motorists should continue driving with caution.
“We recorded a total number of 67 accidents on New Year’s Day as compared to 81 on the same day last year. Four people died this year as compared to eight last year.
“The number of people injured on New Year’s Day were 23 as compared to 55 last year, while the number of vehicles impounded for defects and being unroadworthy also decreased from 125 to 94,” said Chief Supt Nyathi.
He said three road traffic accidents occurred in Harare on the first day of 2017, claiming the four lives.
Chief Supt Nyathi emphasised the need for motorists to observe traffic rules and regulations and to be cautious on the country’s roads.
“Most accidents occurred between 12AM and 6AM. We reiterate that motorists should be careful when driving at night, avoid speeding and stop going through red robots,” said Chief Supt Nyathi.
The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Transport and Infrastructural Development is on record saying 85 percent of accidents in the country were due to human error.
MPs listed 12 other causes of accidents in the country that include bad state of roads, speeding, drunken driving, fatigue, use of cellphones when driving and going through red robots.
The use of second hand tyres, stationary and defective vehicles as well as stray animals on the roads, inadequate road signage and markings as well as lack of traffic enforcement were also cited.
The committee said the government should increase fines charged for traffic offences so that they are deterrent and introduce traffic courts where routine offenders are charged and licences are endorsed or cancelled.
Pamela Shumba. source-chronicle