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Police have launched a manhunt for the perpetrators who allegedly petrol-bombed nine trucks on the N3 and R103 near Heidelberg on Thursday night.
Gauteng police spokesperson Capt Mavela Masondo said preliminary investigations revealed that a white Toyota Quantum and a black VW vehicle, both with unknown registrations, had blocked the road. Then a number of trucks caught fire after petrol-bombs were allegedly thrown at them.
This occurred at about 8.30pm on Thursday.
“Seven trucks were torched on the N3 between Heidelberg and Vosloorus while two trucks were set alight on the R103.”
Five trucks were set alight on the R59, between Parys and Sasolburg, just before 21:00 on Saturday.
When police arrived on the scene, firefighters from Sasolburg had already extinguished the blaze.
According to police spokesperson Brigadier Motantsi Makhele, the trucks were forced to stop after a petrol bomb was thrown at one.
"It was also indicated that shots were fired [at] other trucks, forcing them to stop," he added.
"The drivers fled into the nearby field and four other trucks were then set alight."
The motive for the attack is under investigation and no arrests have been made.
The truck drivers were treated for shock at Parys District Hospital.
At least 25 trucks have been set alight in the past few days.
According to All Truck Drivers Forum and Allied South Africa (ATDFASA), a national shutdown – scheduled to take place from 23 November to 25 November – was a protest against the employment of foreign national drivers in the SA trucking industry.
“Truck owners prefer foreign national drivers because they don’t want to comply with the labour law and with the main collective agreement of the NBCRFLI [National Bargaining Council for the Road Freight and Logistics Industry] because foreign national drivers are cheap labour for them and work like slaves with long hours for them because foreign drivers do not complain.
“We, as ATDFASA, have talked about this for more than three years but no change has been done and the same issue continues,” read a statement from the organisation.
The new modus operandi is to throw petrol bombs from bridges onto trucks, as most of the burning trucks are found near bridges. It was not only the immediate loss of a truck that should be concerning, but also the chain reaction it set off.
Insurance will skyrocket and drivers will start to demand danger pay in an economy that is already in deep trouble.
This was the warning of economist Mike Schussler, who said he also doubted whether government had the political capital to take on the problem. He often worked with the transport industry and talked to all the stakeholders on a regular basis.
According to the All Truck Drivers Forum and Allied South Africa (ATDFASA), this was a national shutdown in protest against the employment of foreign national drivers in the local trucking industry.
National shutdownATDFASA said truck owners preferred foreign drivers because they did not want to comply with labour laws and the main collective agreement of the National Bargaining Council for the Road Freight and Logistics Industry (NBCRFLI) because foreign drivers were cheap labour, worked long hours and did not complain.
Schussler did not agree.
“It is a ruse or ploy for people who try to create jobs for others and themselves. They scare off truck drivers and then offer their jobs to others who have to pay them for the jobs. The NBCRFLI already got its lawyers to write to them.”
Burning trucks is ‘economic sabotage’, says economist
More at: https://citizen.co.za/business/busi...g-trucks-is-economic-sabotage-says-economist/
Where do you even get this stuff? Some kinda gevaar based whatsapp group?
No mein kampfy lady. Im good.They are more commonly referred to as the police (or 'the enemy' if you are pro-EFF ).
It is quite common in SA to need to know which routes are burning so you can plan accordingly. Apologies if you find staying informed unnecessary and alarmist comrade.