Paper presented at the 22nd Annual Southern African Transport Conference 14 - 16 July 2003 "National issues affecting the movement of people and goods - strategic approaches", CSIR International Convention Centre, Pretoria, South Africa. ABSTRACT: The emotional, social and economic impact of road traffic accidents worldwide calls for urgent action. South Africa is no exception and is currently seeking strategies to reduce the number of deaths and injuries resulting from motor vehicle collisions. Road accidents are due to a number of reasons including speed, alcohol, fatigue and reckless driving. Also, people do not have the necessary knowledge or skills that allow them to deal or identify with the hostile traffic environment. Receiving road safety education as part of their normal school curriculum is recognised as being one of the most effective ways of providing people with this type of knowledge. The government of KwaZulu Natal has pledged itself to a long term commitment to road safety in the province, to reduce the death and crash toll in the province from present levels which are in the region of 15 times that of countries which can be classified as the “ worlds best practice”. The Asiphephe project is the initiative of the provincial government, and will work closely with the national Arrive Alive campaign and road safety projects in other provinces to ensure a cohesive national approach to road safety and crash reduction. The Durban Metro Area has the highest number of reported accidents in the province with the main contributor being the township of Umlazi. Umlazi is situated 20 km south of Durban and has the Mangosuthu Highway as its only entrance and exit to the area. The statistics reveal that the youth of Umlazi are the main casualties of all accidents. The Mangosuthu Technikon will be used as a basis for the survey since these students are starting to use the roads as drivers, pedestrians, potential vehicle owners or prospective drivers and are shortly due to become part of the economically active population. This paper will focus on current road safety issues and discuss the findings of the survey.
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