Hans Dettman Highway cause for concern

Rafeek Shah, MPL

DA KZN Spokesperson on Transport

The Democratic Alliance has written to KZN Transport MEC, Willies Mchunu, regarding concerns over Hans Dettman highway.

The first of these is the intersection of Hans Dettman and Newton Road at Mariannhill Industrial Park in Pinetown.  Regular accidents and near mishaps occur at this location on a daily basis.  The reasons for this include lack of proper planning, unsuitable road infrastructure, pot-holes, poor road markings and a lack of other safety measures.

Traffic moving in either direction on this highway travels at speeds of more than 80 km per hour. However, it becomes congested when one approaches the turn- off into Newton Road – simply because there is no dedicated left lane for smooth outflow.  This congestion has become worse with the establishment of a new petrol station at the corner of Newton Road and the Highway.

Another intersection that must be looked at urgently is that of Wingen Walk and Shallcross.  Recently a serious accident at this location resulted in the death a mother and her child – on Mother’s Day.  This tragedy could have been avoided if the bush along the road reserve had been regularly trimmed.  Instead, motorists approaching the Highway from the Wingen Walk direction are forced to creep beyond the stop sign in order to have a clearer view of traffic approaching the intersection.

The DA has called for the department to trim or remove bush along this Highway, arrange with the RTI for more frequent speed trapping and attend to the continuous water seepage from the verges, which is causing damage to the road surface, creating potholes and rendering the road dangerous to traffic.

The DA has also requested that the MEC address the lack of lighting which makes driving at night dangerous.  We have suggested that lighting be installed and that fixed [cat-eyes] reflectors are installed, indicating lane channelling and road shoulders.

The DA firmly believes that with the implementation of these measures, the risk of accidents on this Highway can be greatly reduced.