Eight people have been killed and 13 rushed to hospital following a head-on collision between a minibus taxi and another vehicle between Melkbosstrand and Philadelphia, in the Western Cape, on Monday.
Police spokesperson Capt FC van Wyk said when Philadelphia police responded to the crash on the M19 at around 8am, seven people had already been declared dead by paramedics, including the driver of the Suzuki sedan, who was later freed from the car using the jaws of life.
“According to reports, the taxi coming from the direction of Dunoon was picking up passengers and taking them to Melkbosstrand. On the Melkbosstrand road, one of the taxi’s tyres burst, slamming the taxi into oncoming traffic [and] hitting another vehicle,” said Van Wyk.
“The driver of the other vehicle was declared dead on the scene and the jaws of life were used. The driver of the taxi was seriously injured and taken to a nearby hospital for medical treatment.”
Russel Meiring, spokesperson for ER24, said when paramedics and rescue services arrived on the scene, they found a light motor vehicle in the road while a taxi was lying on its side on the side of the road.
“Several people were found lying scattered around the scene and a man was found trapped inside the taxi. Medics assessed the patients and found that eight people in the taxi had sustained fatal injuries. Nothing could be done for them, and they were declared dead,” he said.
Meiring said the injuries sustained ranged from minor to critical.
Once those who were trapped were freed, medics treated the patients and provided the critically injured with advanced life support interventions.
“Once treated, one critically injured man was airlifted by the AMS Medical helicopter to a nearby hospital. The remaining patients were transported to hospitals for further care.
Police are investigating a case of culpable homicide.