18 killed in South African road crash

1st December 2011, Comments 0 comments

Eighteen people, including a baby, were killed Thursday when a minibus taxi collided head-on with a truck, causing both vehicles to burst into flames, a local safety official said.

The taxi was traveling to Johannesburg from neighbouring Mozambique when it veered out of its lane and slammed into the truck near the eastern South African town of Belfast, Mpumalanga public safety spokesman Joseph Mabuza told the Sapa news agency.

"The bodies were burnt beyond recognition," he said.

Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele said in a statement that after the collision, the truck dragged the minibus along the highway until the fire erupted.

The area is notorious for its hills and serpentine roads that climb 1,000 metres (3,300 feet) from provincial capital Nelspruit to Johannesburg.

Traffic on the roads increases when migrant workers travel home for the festive season.

Twenty people, including two children, were killed when two taxis crashed into a stationary truck in November in the Eastern Cape province.

© 2011 AFP

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