Transport Minister Dipuo Peters has released the festive season road death statistics for 2016.
Peters says a total of 1,714 fatalities were recorded in this festive period, which is a 5% increase on the previous period.
By mid-December Peters says her department had already recorded more than 800 fatalities on the country’s roads since the beginning of the festive season.
In this, the minister says the overwhelming majority of fatal crashes were as a result of a single motor vehicle overturning and head on-collisions.
The early December 2016 figures were a staggering 17% increase in road crashes compared to the same period in 2015.
Peters says 432 roadblocks were conducted throughout the country during the festive period and 453, 263 fines were issued.
She says the back-to-back extended long weekend over Christmas and New Year 2016/17 posed a challenge to road safety and the rain complicated factors.
The highest number of fatalities were recorded in KwaZulu-Natal, the Eastern Cape, Gauteng and Limpopo, which made up 61% of the total deaths.
Peters says that she’s concerned about the incompetence of some drivers and the number of unroadworthy vehicles on the roads.
She has warned those who obtained their licences illegally that they will lose them.