14 April 2017
TRAC N4 has the safety and wellbeing of all N4 Toll Route users as a primary concern at all times and in particular over holiday periods such as Easter. Road users are encouraged to adhere to speed limits, always buckle up, do not use a cell phone while driving, take regular rests and most importantly do not drink and drive.
Recent statistics show that the top three causes of accidents on South African roads are distracted drivers, speed and driving while under the influence of alcohol. They further indicate that these driving crimes increase during peak traffic periods such as Easter and the festive holidays.
Speeding is a leading cause of the majority of accidents on South African roads. The dangers of speeding include:
•Speed reduces the amount of available time needed to stop or/and avoid a crash,
•Speed extends the distance a vehicle travels while the driver reacts to a dangerous situation,
•Speed reduces the ability of the driver to steer safely around curves or objects on the road,
•Speed increases the severity of a crash once it occurs.
The use of a cell phone while driving is currently considered the biggest cause of road accidents on South Africa. A recent report stated that up to 25% of road accidents are caused from using a mobile phone while behind the wheel, be it for talking or texting purposes. Doing so is dangerous for various reasons, including:
•Competence – affects driver competence, resulting in a 37% decrease in parietal lobe activity in the brain,
•Distraction: a single instance of mobile phone usage represents an average of 52 seconds of distracted driving. At 60km/h, this is equivalent to driving “blind” for one kilometer, and makes the driver four times more likely to have an accident.
Alcohol remains a leading cause of death on South African roads. It is a proven fact that one’s driving ability is impaired after just one unit of alcohol. Alcohol has the following effects on an individual:
•Feeling more relaxed and drowsy may cause a driver to fall asleep at the wheel,
•Alcohol can cause impaired vision as it slows eye muscle function, alters eye movement and visual perception. Night vision and color perception can also be impaired,
•Reduced reaction times as it slows reflexes,
•Alcohol reduces concentration and vigilance,
•Alcohol creates difficulty in understanding sensory information which results in poor eye/hand/foot coordination,
•Alcohol decreases one’s tracking (positioning) ability,
•Alcohol hinders the ability to make rational decisions.
In ensuring that the N4 is safe for all, at all times, road users are also encouraged to take advantage of the 24 hour TRAC N4 Helpdesk which can be reached on 0800- 87-22-64.