Thirty-three traffic officers have died of COVID-19-related complications over the 2020 festive season and more than 500 have tested positive.
This was revealed by Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula when he released the festive season statistics in Gauteng on Friday.
Mbalula said the isolation of staff together with the Disaster Management regulations, severely curtailed the department’s ability to undertake its usual face-to-face road safety programmes.
Despite the limitations, more than 4 400 motorists were arrested for offences that include driving under the influence, excessive speeding, violation of operating permits and the possession of false documents.
518 traffic officers ?♀️ have tested positive for #Covid19SA and had to be isolated while 33 passed away during the period under review. @MbalulaFikile #RoadStats pic.twitter.com/QD4DbzZ1V1
— Road Traffic Management Corporation (@TrafficRTMC) January 22, 2021
Earlier this month, the South African Police Service (SAPS) said the coronavirus pandemic has taken its toll on its members as the country battles the second wave of infections.
National Police Spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo said more than 300 police officers have succumbed to COVID-19-related complications while many others are in hospital or isolation. Minister called on the police to enforce regulations.
As the holiday season started last year in December, Police Minister Bheki Cele urged police to be strict in enforcing the wearing of masks in public as cases across provinces in the country surged: