By Victor Maphosa
Thirteen people died in two separate road accidents which occurred in Manicaland and Mashonaland Provinces yesterday.
In Manicaland Province, seven people — four Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Service (ZPCS) officers, two civilians and an inmate — died when the pick-up truck in which they were travelling collided head-on with a fuel tanker at the 67km peg along the Mutare-Nyanga Road yesterday morning.
Two inmates survived the fatal accident and were rushed to Bonda Mission Hospital where they are said to be in a stable condition.
In a separate incident, six people died on the spot on the 135km peg along the Harare-Mukumbura Road when a motorist lost control of his vehicle and hit a pedestrian who had just disembarked from another vehicle and five others who were reportedly walking on the road verge.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the accidents in a statement last night.
“The Zimbabwe Republic Police is greatly saddened by the loss of 13 people who perished in two separate accidents which occurred on March 5, 2021.
“In the first accident which occurred at the 135km peg along Harare-Mukumbura Road, at around 1020 hours, a motorist who was driving a BMW motor vehicle towards Mt Darwin struck and killed six people who include a pedestrian who had just disembarked from another vehicle and five others who were walking on the verge of the road.
“One person was also injured and taken to Mt Darwin Hospital. The bodies of the deceased were ferried to Mt Darwin Hospital mortuary for postmortem,” he said.
Commenting on the Mutare-Nyanga accident, Asst Comm Nyathi said the driver of a fuel tanker encroached into the lane of an oncoming Nissan NP300 which had nine people on board, resulting in a head on collision.
“Seven people in the Nissan NP300 motor vehicle died on the spot while two others were injured. The bodies of the deceased were taken to Bonda Mission Hospital mortuary for postmortem.
Names of the deceased are being withheld until their next of kin have been advised.
He appealed to motorists to be observant, exercise caution and avoid speeding especially during this wet period.
“It is the responsibility of drivers to be safety conscious on the roads.”
ZPCS deputy national spokesperson Principal Correctional Officer Peter Chaparamanga said the organisation was saddened by the death of officers and inmates.
“We are saddened to advise of the passing on of four officers and one inmate in a road accident on their way to Nyanga court. It was a head-on collision with a fuel tanker just after Hauna turnoff.
Two inmates survived and are admitted at Bonda Mission Hospital. It’s a great loss and the province is still in shock at this tragic loss,” he said. The Herald