Family loses four children as 12 people die in scholar transport accident

A family lost four children who were among 11 who died when their scholar transport caught fire in Carletonville on Wednesday morning. The driver also died.

The Toyota minibus taxi transporting children to Rockland Primary School and Laerskool Blyvooruitsig was apparently rear-ended by a Ford Ranger, leading the minibus taxi to roll and catch fire.

Eleven children and the driver were reportedly burnt beyond recognition, while eight other children were taken to Carletonville Hospital. Seven were discharged in the afternoon while one was moved to Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital in Soweto for specialised treatment. The driver of the Ford Ranger was also hospitalised.

President Cyril Ramaphosa offered his condolences to the families, friends, pupils and educators of the deceased children.

 “The loss of such young lives at the start of a new school term touches all of us as a nation. We wish the affected families and school communities the best as they mourn the passing of children who have been deprived of fulfilling their potential and spending their lives with families and friends,” Ramaphosa said.

Gauteng premier Panyaza Lesufi extended the government’s condolences.

“I have just been briefed … that one of the families lost four children, which becomes extremely painful and unbearable,” said Lesufi.

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