Yesterday, there was an accident on the N1 highway out of central Cape Town, that ended up causing every route out of the city centre to be clogged up with traffic. The accident had happened at 10am, and the road was only reopened after 4pm, thus causing rush hour to be a nightmare. I got caught in that traffic and did not even go anywhere near the spot where the accident happened.

I would like to know, how can a city be designed where if one of the routes out of the city has a problem, the rest of the city comes to a standstill. True, the N1 is one of the main arterials out of the city, but off the top of my head, I can think of at least three or four alternative routes to avoid the area. The problem comes in that all of Cape Town’s roads are so near full capacity that any additional pressure on any of those routes causes those routes to be pushed over the limits and causing tens of thousands of commuters to have elevated blood pressure.

Our traffic problems are not helped by the myriad of road works in progress, and even the usefulness of the planned Bus Rapid Transit system, which would be the first real public transport which would work, is in doubt. Last week taxi drivers once again striked about the BRT and want the project canned. Is there any light at the end of the tunnel?

Local government needs to do something to address our road system…..perhaps we, as Capetonians, ought to strike to get some improvement rather than strike to get rid of any improvements.