Durban – Frustrations over traffic logjams by trucks have reached boiling point with residents calling for heavy load vehicles to be taken off residential streets.
Residents of Seaview and Bellair have joined other areas in Durban in a petition that seeks to stop the trucks from “terrorising” their roads.
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Samantha Windgove, Ward 65 councillor, said she’d received numerous complaints from residents who said they were taking longer to get to work because of traffic caused by heavy load trucks.
“Residents complain that the logistics trucks park along residential roads, damage the road infrastructure, cause chaos and havoc in residential areas,” she said. “We are not saying take trucks off our roads, the residents just don’t want them in the residential roads.”
Residents feel they are carrying the burden of the government’s failure to plan for the extension of the harbour.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, there were long queues of traffic in the Bayhead area, Umbilo, the Bluff and surrounds, with trucks slowly moving in and out of the harbour due to backlogs at the Port.
Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) said on Thursday that the backlog had been cleared on Wednesday night and operations were proceeding smoothly.
“TNPA, SAPS, Durban metro police and terminal operators worked tirelessly to ensure that operations at the various depots and terminals in the precincts returned to normal as soon as possible,” TNPA said in a statement.
“Integrated measures to clear the traffic backlog, inclusive of the arterial roads feeding the Bayhead and Island View precinct, assisted in easing the gridlock.”
TNPA said the congestion began on Tuesday “when one of the privately owned container depots began experiencing congestion in their stacking yard, leading to a build-up of traffic on Bayhead Road. The situation was exacerbated when frustrated truck drivers began attempting to drive contra flow”.
Transnet had to ferry workers across the bay when they were unable to get to work at the terminals and depots in the Bayhead and Island View precincts. This delay affected operations at Durban Container Terminal Pier 1 and Pier 2 which were working with minimal resources. IOL