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RTMC to utilise drones to identify road hazards

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The Road Traffic Management Corporation will invest in drone technology. (Photo: DOT Twitter)
The Road Traffic Management Corporation will invest in drone technology. (Photo: DOT Twitter)

At yesterday’s launch of the 2021 “Easter Road Safety” campaign, the Department of Transport revealed the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) will invest in drone technology.

While no specific dates were provided for when this technology will be deployed, RTMC said the investment in drones is to assist it in identifying hazards on roads, as well as motorists who are driving recklessly and at unacceptable high speeds.

The drones, which can travelfor as far as 10km from where they are being controlled, will be able to zoom in and track vehicles on the road, according to the department.

Transport deputy minister Dikeledi Magadzi stated: “We simply cannot continue using the same tactics that have not worked in the past and hoping that these tactics will be able to yield different results.

“Let us embrace the opportunities presented by the fourth industrial revolution and leverage new frontier technologies that have been presented to fight the cancer of reckless conduct.”

This, she believes, will help in reducing the loss of lives on the roads.

The drones form part of the new technologies the South African traffic agency is deploying to enhance road safety for motorists, as well as curb traffic law violations.

At the same event, the transport department and RTMC introduced body-worn cameras (bodycams) that will be used by traffic officers.

The organisations have described the bodycams as useful tools in dealing with the high levels of bribery incidents by providing a factual account of events.

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