Second head-on collision at Sand River Bridge – photos

Another head on collision occurred this evening on the Sand River Bridge, the second one in a year.

accident at bridge 005accident at bridge 004

Two passengers in one of the vehicles with an NJ number plate were taken to Humansdorp Hospital for treatment for injuries sustained. There were five people in that car.

The driver and two other passengers were unhurt as was the driver of the second car with a CA number plate. The Cape Town car had no passengers.

SAP officers at the scene said both cars were travelling in opposite directions to and from St Francis Bay when one of them turned a corner too wide and the cars collided and came to a dead stop.

The latest accident comes ahead of the tarring by Provincial authorities of the gravel temporary bridge across the Sand River that is scheduled to occur on 5 December 2012 betwween 8 am to 5 pm.

Last week a white Combi carrying nine passengers careered through the barriers on its approach to the bridge from Humansdorp before vaulting through the air an landing on the the opposite bank. All passengers and the driver miraculously escape injury.

The first head on collision involved a headmaster from St Francis Bay,  Charles Coenraad, and a driver of a 4×4 in November last year.  The drivers and passengers escaped injury.

The number of the vehicles that have been involved in accidents on this fourth temporary bridge since the initial causeway washed away last year is approaching two dozen. From luxury 4x4s to smaller vehicles, cars new and old have met their fate in the Sand River or on a bank. Some of the cars were valued at around R1-million.

Though signage and barriers are at the bridge, these are considered ineffective by many observers. There have been repeated calls to the Provincial Roads Department – under whose jurisdiction the bridge falls – to place more adequate signage and barriers on the sides of the bridge. 

Fortunately so far no one has been seriously injured at the bridge and there have been no lives lost in the accidents. The Sand River Bridge has washed away four times in 15 months during floods. The last time was in October this year when residents of St Francis Bay and Cape St Francis were again marooned.

St Francis Chronicle reported recently that construction of a new, bigger, stronger and safer bridge will only start in 2014 – as there first has to be an EIA.

The police and observers are concerned that with the festive season approaching and many youngsters and visitors crossing the bridge there could be more accidents. There have been renewed appeals to have improved, proper metal barriers erected along the sides of the bridge before the holidays start.

See articles on previous accidents accidents:

https://stfrancischronicle.com/2012/11/25/nine-people-escape-serious-injury-at-sand-river-bridge/
https://stfrancischronicle.com/2012/10/07/another-luxury-ploughs-into-the-sand-river/
https://stfrancischronicle.com/2011/11/11/headmaster%E2%80%99s-wife-seriously-injured-in-accident-at-sand-river-bridge/

See wash away of bridge in October 2012:
https://stfrancischronicle.com/2012/10/21/the-sand-river-canyon-develops-as-bridge-washes-away-for-3rd-time-photo-gallery/

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