Victor Maphosa, Harare Bureau
SEVEN people died while nine others were seriously injured yesterday morning when a vehicle they were travelling in veered off the road and overturned at the 10 kilometre peg along the Lutumba-Chitulipasi Road in Beitbridge.
The vehicle, which was heading for Beitbridge town, had 16 passengers on board and 18 boxes of cigarettes.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the accident.
“The accident occurred around 0300 hours today (yesterday) on the 10km peg along Lutumba-Chitulipasi Road and seven people perished.
“A Toyota vehicle which was bound for Beitbridge had 16 people aboard including the driver. On approaching the 10km peg on the said road, the driver lost control of the speeding vehicle which resulted in it veering off the road to the left, overturned three times before it landed on its right side killing seven people on the spot and injuring nine others,” he said.
Asst Comm Nyathi said the injured were rushed to the nearest hospital for medical assistance.
He added that investigations were underway to establish the cause of the accident, and the destination of the 18 boxes of cigarettes that were in the vehicle.
“Police are currently carrying out investigations on the cause of the accident which claimed these lives. We are also conducting investigations on the source of the cigarettes and to establish whether the 18 boxes were meant for local markets or were intended for smuggling outside Zimbabwe.”
He appealed to motorists to always adhere to road rules and regulations to avoid unnecessary loss of lives due to road accidents.
“It is unfortunate that we continue to lose precious lives due to road accidents. We continue to urge our drivers to avoid speeding.
“We reiterate that drivers must be observant and always adhere to road rules and regulations to avoid unnecessary loss of lives,” Asst Comm Nyathi said.