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Truck driver gets 8 years in jail for horror Machadodorp that killed 18

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A Mozambican truck driver responsible for the 2017 horror fatal crash that claimed the lives of 18 people outside Machadodorp, Mpumalanga has been sentenced to eight years imprisonment.

The Middelburg regional court sentenced Mr. SA Macaucau after a lengthy trial in which two crash investigators from the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) gave expert evidence for the state. The defence also called a mechanical engineer to give evidence in defence of the accused.

The crash occurred on the 4th of July 2017 when a truck collided head-on with two minibus vehicles on R541 outside Machadodorp.

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The collision happened when the driver of the truck crossed the centreline and crashed with the two minibus vehicles travelling in the opposite direction.

Eighteen people were killed and 10 were seriously injured.

The driver of the truck, Macuacau sustained no injuries and was arrested on the scene and charged with culpable homicide.

The RTMC Crash Investigation Unit initiated investigations by conducting an on-site investigation as well as a full mechanical investigation. Reports were completed and submitted to the SAPS to form part of the case docket.

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The evidence of the two RTMC investigators was found to be credible and led to the conviction of the accused. He was sentenced to eight years imprisonment of which five years is suspended for four years.

The RTMC says they would have liked to see a much harsher sentence considering the number of people who died and were injured in the crash. It, however, welcomes the fact that the negligent driver would be spending time behind bars for failing to adhere to the rules of the road.

This will send a message to other reckless drivers that they could spend time in prison for inconsiderate and negligent behaviour on the roads.

The RTMC is currently investigating the case involving a speeding truck that went viral over the weekend. The truck is shown in a video driving at what seems to be a high speed and overtaking recklessly and negligently down a hill.

“The truck operator has been identified and investigators will be interviewing him to ascertain facts about the incident,” RTMC said.

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