Safety plan for Easter

Motorists can have free vehicle safety checks done at any City-owned vehicle testing station until tomorrow, Thursday March 29.

In a statement issued earlier this week, the City said public transport operators are also encouraged to be part of Operation Exodus, which focuses on driver and vehicle fitness for long-distance operators.

“Road safety will always be one of our priorities over the holiday periods. Easter coincides with the school holidays this year, so we expect many people to take a break from work and head to other parts of the country. If you’re a private motorist, make sure your vehicle is in good working order. The same goes for public transport operators who have thousands of lives in their hands,” said the City’s Mayoral committee member for safety and security; and social services, JP Smith.

“Of course, the bigger concern is the behaviour of drivers and the absolute contempt that many have for the law.

“In the last week, our traffic officers arrested 132 motorists for driving drunk, reckless and negligent driving and outstanding warrants. These statistics are par for the course, not to mention the increase in recent months in the number of public transport drivers who were found to be drunk behind the wheel.”

On the beaches and at tidal pools, 172 lifeguards will be on duty until Monday April 9, when school holidays end.

Their hours of operation will be from 10am to 6pm, daily and they will be on duty at the following beaches: Kogel Bay, Harmony Park, Strand, Macassar, Monwabisi, Mnandi, Blue Waters, Strandfontein, Sunrise Beach, Muizenberg, Danger Beach, Kalk Bay, Fish Hoek, Hout Bay, Llandudno, Clifton 4th, Camps Bay, Milnerton, Melkbosstrand, Big Bay and Silwerstroom.

Five City-owned swimming pools will be open with lifeguards on duty between 10am and 4pm and these include the Blue Downs indoor, Long Street indoor, Mnandi, Sea Point and Strand indoor pool.

“While the weather has started to turn, we expect that there might be some good conditions in the forecast that will draw people to the beach or the swimming pools that are operational at this time.

“I urge the public to please swim only in areas where lifeguards are present and to obey their instructions. We had a tragic incident at Monwabisi this weekend where three people drowned and we will do everything possible to prevent further incidents. However, we need the public to play their part. This also includes not drinking on the beaches which is in contravention of our by-laws,” added Mr Smith.